When it is hot and steamy out, we don’t feel like having a big heavy meal. On Saturdays we usually have brunch consisting of bread, cheese, a frittata or omelet and a salad. This Saturday, I finally served two dishes I made from the Plenty cookbook, written by Israeli chef Yotam Ottolenghi, that Mr BT bought for me on our trip to the States and London last month.
One of the dishes I made was butternut squash that I roasted with freshly ground cardamom and allspice and served with wedges of fresh lemon (couldn’t find any limes in the market) and a lemon, yogurt and tehina dressing that was light and refreshing and had a completely unexpected mixture of tastes. You can serve this as a meze with other salads, a first course or a side dish.
I can’t wait to try more recipes from this cookbook.
from Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London's Ottolenghi by Yotam Ottolenghi
2 whole limes
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium butternut squash (about 900g or 2lbs)
2 tablespoons cardamom pods
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 cup (100g) Greek-style yogurt
2 tablespoons (30g) tahini
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 green chilli, thinly sliced
10g picked coriander leaves or chopped chives
Preheat the oven to 210C (400F).
Trim off the limes' tops and tails using a small paring knife. Section the lime using the technique shown here. Cut each section into thirds. Place them in a small bowl, sprinkle with a little salt, drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, stir and set aside.
Cut the butternut squash in half lengthways, scoop out the seeds and discard, Cut each half, top to bottom, into 1 cm thick slices and lay them out on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Place the cardamom pods in a mortar and use the pestle to get the seeds out of the pods. Discard the pods and pound the seeds into a rough powder. Transfer to a small bowl, add the allspice and the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil, mix and brush over the butternut slices. Sprinkle with sea salt and place in the oven for 15 minutes or until fork-tender. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Peel off the skin or leave it on if you prefer.
Whisk together the yogurt, tahini, lime juice, 2 tablespoons of water and a pinch of salt. The dressing should be thick but runny enough to pour; add more water if necessary.
To serve, arrange the cooled butternut slices on a serving platter and drizzle with the yogurt dressing. Spoon over the lime pieces and their juices and scatter the chilli slices on top. Garnish with the coriander or chives and serve.