I think I could quite happily live on this dish all winter, and I don't even like leftovers much. It had great taste, texture, and temperature too, leaving me with nothing to dislike, which is saying a lot. I first saw the recipe on Smitten Kitchen, but it is originally from one of the Moro cookbooks. I made a few changes, by roasting the chickpeas and onions, and by pureeing all the dressing ingredients together. Why? Well, I usually soak and cook my own chickpeas, cause I'm a nerd that way, and because I don't always like the texture of canned, so I thought roasting them would firm them up. As for the onion, I figured if everything else was cooked, that I didn't want crunchy raw onion. And because everything is cooked I'm not calling this a salad. Why do people do that? Cauliflower and cheese sauce is the same idea and nobody calls that a salad. Oh, and the sauce! I have often bought tahini, but I can't remember ever finishing it. I usually throw it out when I move. Not sure why, but this container is going to go fast, on this recipe alone. Pureeing it with the cilantro and the roasted garlic and lots of lime juice and salt made it sing, and cut the sweetness of the squash in a very good way. Try this! Just don't call it salad.
Warm butternut squash and chickpeas with tahini-cilantro dressing
Adapted from The Moro Cookbook
about 2½ pounds of butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1" cubes
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed and patted dry (or 1½ cups of cooked and drained)
1 garlic clove, peeled and halved if large
½ teaspoon ground allspice (optional--I used it, but couldn't really taste it)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 425℉. Toss all the ingredients above together on a baking sheet and cook for 25-40 minutes, till squash and onion are tender and touched with brown. Cool slightly.
¼ cup lemon juice
3 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons water, plus extra to thin, if needed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium bunch of cilantro
1 clove garlic, fresh for a stronger flavour, or the roasted one from above for a mellower taste
Place cilantro in food processor and chop coarsely. Add the roasted garlic from the baking tray and process again. Add the remaining ingredients and puree. Taste and add salt--I liked this a bit salty. You should end up with a bright green and very flavourful sauce.
To serve, toss squash mixture with dressing, or serve it on the side so everyone can decide how much they'd like. Garnish with cilantro. I had lots of dressing left over and found it made a great dip for vegetables.