Meg Makes: Lebanese recipe for Butternut Squash Wedges and Tahini Sauce

Meg Makes: Lebanese recipe for Butternut Squash Wedges and Tahini Sauce

Rob and I first tried Lebanese food a few years ago, when a cafe in downtown Champaign used to sell it a few evenings a week.

I believe that's no longer the case, but that hasn't stopped us, especially Rob, from rhapsodizing about the dishes we ate there.

Recently, he requested from the library a cookbook called "The Lebanese Kitchen" by Salma Hage, which is an enormous book filled with wonderful photos and simple-looking recipes.

Blog PhotoWe made a trip to the international food store Saturday to stock up, and then roasted a chicken and some butternut squash using Hage's recipes for dinner Saturday night.

The chicken was really good (and I'll share the recipe soon). The butternut squash wedges were divine, though, and would be a flavorful side dish even without the tahini sauce.

I really liked the combination of savory and spicy flavors, and that the squash didn't need to be peeled before wedging. You just scrape the flesh away from the peel as you eat it.

Butternut Squash Wedges and Tahini Sauce

1 butternut squash, cut into wedges

5 tablespoons olive oil

Blog Photo1 thyme sprig (or a scant teaspoon dried thyme)

1 rosemary sprig (or a scant teaspoon dried rosemary)

1 /2 teaspoon smoked crushed chiles (I used crushed red pepper)

1 teaspoon sea salt (next time, I will use about half a teaspoon)

4 tablespoons tahini

1 garlic clove, crushed

juice of 1/ 2 lemon

5 tablespoons water

Preheat oven to 375 degrees (my oven was actually at 350 degrees as I was roasting a chicken at the same time. This just added cooking time to my squash).

Put the squash wedges into a roasting pan, drizzle with 4 tablespoons of the olive oil, add the thyme and rosemary and sprinkle with crushed chiles and sea salt. Roast for 40-45 minutes or until tender.

Meanwhile, make the sauce. Mix together the tahini, garlic, remaining olive oil, lemon juice and water in a bowl. Remove the squash from the oven, transfer the wedges to a serving dish and serve with tahini sauce.

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