What I'm cooking and eating

Monday, 30 September 2013

Butternut squash spread/dip

I first came across this as a meze when lunching at Whole Paycheck Foods Market in Kensington High Street, and thought it delicious.  It belongs to the same "family" of spread/dips as hummus, particularly the kind made with vegetables instead of chickpeas (see, for instance, this delicious courgette "hummus" recipe here and many similar ones, and one of these days I plan to try it with a large tomato instead of courgette), but uses peanut butter instead of tahini.  Of course, you can substitute tahini if you like, or any other nut butter, come to that!

I was cooking butternut squashs, so just cooked extra while I was at it.

1/4 butternut squash (approximately - you want 200-250 gr or so)
1/2 tbs olive oil, salt and pepper

If the bit of butternut you are using  has seeds in it, scoop them out and discard.  Brush the cut surface with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, before roasting, skin side up, in a hot oven for about an hour.  Alternatively, peel and cut into chunks, spray with olive oil, and microwave for a few minutes until cooked, which is a lot quicker if you are cooking it specially.

When cold, peel and roughly cube the flesh, then place in a food processor and add:
1 tablespoonful of smooth peanut butter - ideally whole nut, with no added sugar.  Or tahini, if you prefer.
1 tablespoonful olive oil
1 tablespoonful lemon juice
(Optional) 1 clove garlic, crushed, or a sprinkle of garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
I also added 1 tsp fish sauce, but that does make it non-vegetarian, which might matter to some people; if it matters to you, or if you don't have fish sauce, leave it out or substitute a small amount of soya sauce or Marmite (you don't want a lot, just enough to lift the flavour,  not enough to make it taste!).

Blitz until smooth, and use as you would hummus or a vegetable dip.  Very nice, and an unusual flavour, I find.


  1. Sounds yummy! It will make a change from my squash risotto recipe, which is from River Cafe and gorgeous but hugely time consuming!


    1. Risotto is time-cosuming, but worth it on occasions! But there are plenty more ways of eating butternut squash - simply as an additional vegetable, if nothing else. Or mix with feta cheese and couscous (I've also seen this with a blue cheese and pearl barley) and serve with a tomato sauce..... and it makes fantastic soup, too.