My kids had a really fun birthday celebration for me on Saturday evening before my daughter, Cait, and the herd headed back to their home in London on Sunday. I was strictly warned not to prepare anything for dinner that evening. I took a luxurious little nap late in the afternoon and when I got up, there were the most amazing aromas emanating from my little kitchen, when I wandered downstairs, she was mixing and chopping and pureeing. What caught my eye was a beautiful bright green sauce she had made. She also had Greek yogurt and sriracha out and I surmised, when I heard the convection-oven fan whirring, that the fabulous aromas were coming from whatever she had going on in there.
When I asked her what she was making, she said only one word, “Ottolenghi” and I knew right then and there we were in for a huge treat. But I’ll let her tell you about that.
I have to admit that until moving to England I really could take or leave vegetables. They were always second tier in my mind to the meat and carb selection to any meal I was making or eating. But since moving here where they seem to be treated like “royalty” I’ve turned over a new leaf. I love vegetables, in fact- I think if it weren’t for my husband I could probably become vegetarian myself!
Roasted Squash with Chilli Yogurt and Cilantro Sauce
1 large butternut squash
1 tsp ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
se salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 ounces (about 50g) of cilantro, leaves and stalks, plus extra leaves for garnish1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
3/4 cup Greek yoghurt
1½ tsp sriracha (or other chili sauce)
arugula or baby spinach
1. Heat the oven to 400˚F (200C)
4. Meanwhile, place the cilantro, garlic, remaining oil and a generous pinch of salt in a small food processor and blitz to a fine paste.
5. Lower the oven temperature to 325˚F (160˚C). Lay the pumpkin seeds on an oven tray and roast for six to eight minutes. The skins will pop open and they’ll go light and crisp. Remove and set aside.
6. To serve, mix the yoghurt and chili sauce. Scatter arugula or baby spinach on a serving tray. Lay the squash wedges on top, drizzle over the yoghurt sauce and then the herb sauce (you can also swirl them together). Scatter the seeds on top, followed by a few coriander and mint leaves, and serve.
Adapted from Jerusalem