Butternut Squash and Tahini Spread

My oldest daughter (my zucchini bread baker) surprised me with Yotam Ottolenghi & Sami Tamimi’s new cookbook, Jerusalem, for Hanukkah.  I am very excited to have access to so many of their wonderful recipes.  Today’s is a kind of cross between hummus and baba ghanoush – Butternut Squash and Tahini Spread.

Although I shop it here in its form for dipping, I have also used it in sandwiches with grated carrots and sliced cucumbers.  That was really tasty and satisfying.


The recipe calls for peeling and cutting the butternut squash into chunks.  I used to hate having to peel a butternut squash until I got a cross-wise, or Y, peeler.  Having this simple tool has made the task quick and easy.  I highly recommend getting one if you deal often with butternut squashes or eggplants.


The dish also called for date syrup, allowing for substitution with molasses or maple syrup.  I could not find date syrup, but have pomegranate molasses in the cupboard, so I have substituted that in.


Butternut Squash & Tahini Spread

from Yotal Ottalenghi’s Jerusalem

1 butternut squash, about 2 1/2 lbs, peeled and cut into chunks (from the garden)

3 Tbsp olive oil

1 tsp cinnamon

5 Tbsp tahini

1/2 cup Greek yogurt

2 small cloves garlic, crushed (I minced mine)

1 tsp mixed black and white sesame seeds (or just white if you do not have black)

1 1/2 tsp date syrup (I used pomegranate syrup)

2 Tbsp chopped cilantro (optional) – I do not use cilantro…ever



Preheat oven to 400F.

Spread the squash in a medium  roasting pan. Pour the olive oil over and sprinkle on the cinnamon and 1/2 tsp salt. mix together well. Cover tightly with aluminum foil, roast for 70 minutes, stirring once during the cooking.  Remove from oven and leave to cool.


Transfer the squash to a food processor, along with the tahini, yogurt, and garlic. This can also be done in a bowl with a potato masher or fork.


Roughly pulse, or mash, without the spread becoming smooth.


Spread in a wavy pattern over a flat plate and sprinkle with sesame seeds, drizzle over the syrup, and finish with the cilantro, if using.  Eat with pita and enjoy!


Serves 6 – 8


5 Comments Add yours

  1. rachelocal says:

    I want to eat this now. With a pita. Thanks for the recipe!


  2. This looks so interesting and an unusual but tasty way to enjoy butternut squash. I’m bookmarking this one to try!


    1. Let me know what you think. I think I actually enjoyed it in a sandwich even more than as a dip.


Let me know what you think of this post, and if you try the recipe, please let me know how it was and any suggestions you have. Thanks, Andrea

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