roast squash, tahini, pinenut salad

things have been a little rough. again. and so the mournful returns. its not that i dont enjoy the giggling, the car-mel, heart-shaped cookie cutters, and the hand clapping. i especially love the hand-clapping. its just that the world doesnt really present me with much of that. i realise that some of this may come across as martyrdom (cant imagine why, its not like i have inherited any kind of victim mentality). its just that the world doesnt make me want to clap my hands. its wintery and cold. there are not enough hours in a day before it gets dark and so often there are too many. in the words of a boy i know, this is the winter of our discount tent. theres the interminable problem of israel, its barbarity, and the violence inherent in zionist ideology. then, on a more personal level theres the problem of being in the possession of 14 winning mars bar wrappers and henceforth the looming predicament of having 14 mars bars on my person and (presumably) subsequently in my person. theres an exploding wardrobe full of clothes deemed unsuitable, and a devastatingly unattainable little calvin klein dress, hidden behind a curtain, that i cant afford on the salary of a blogger. and of course, theres the intractable problem of the starter, the untrelenting, unforgiving, and unappealing starter which is suffering in the cold and has had to go into hibernation in the bathroom (until it gets its proving oven). the steam and heat of a post shower environs seems to do worlds of good. which is ok… it just makes this world a stranger place to be. in amidst these troubles, there is so little time for cooking and writing. so this was the best i could come up with. but i make no apologies because it was really quite lovely. so here is an improvised, left-over inspired roast squashy (that was a typo but its very funny so it stays), tahini, pinenut and parmesan (and/or feta) salad.


1 butternut squash (cut into cubes)

4 garlic cloves

few sprigs of thyme (or rosemary…which id dare say is better if you have it. i did not.)

salt & pepper

3 tbsp olive oil

bunch of spinach and rocket leaves

handful of pine nuts lightly toasted

handful of parmesan (shaved)

for tahini….

150ml tahini paste

2 garlic cloves crushed

80ml lemon juice

1/2tsp salt

2 tbs olive oil

150ml water

handful parsley finely chopped

preheat your oven to 200 degrees. cut up your pumpkin and toss in a bowl with 3 or 4 garlic cloves, olive oil, rosemary, sea salt and black pepper and roast for about half hour or until soft.

to make the tahini bash up some garlic in a mortar and pestle. mix the garlic with the lemon juice in a bowl. add the tahini and mix to combine. then add the water and the olive oil and mix well. check for seasoning and if its too thick just add more water. finally throw in the chopped parsley. set aside.

put leaves on the plate. add the squash on top. then drizzle with tahini. scatter over pine nuts and finally give it some shavings of parmesan. alternatively crumble over some feta. or even alternately do both.


7 Responses to “roast squash, tahini, pinenut salad”

  1. 1 smoo June 6, 2010 at 8:29 pm

    You can’t go wrong with roast pumpkin (ok squash) and pinenuts. Hopefully it made the world perfect, if only for a short time. Thanks for your constant entertainment and inspiration – hope you can hear the applause from wherever you are. Just let me know if you need my contact details so that I can assist you with your 14 mars bars predicament.

  2. 2 jo June 8, 2010 at 12:37 am

    were i mere inches closer, this salad could indeed make up for a very unfortunate incident whereby, whisked away by the thrill of an indian wedding in upstate ny, i forgot the birthday of one exceptionally supportive and loving mother.

    a mother who introduced me to the joys of mars bar slice (always handy when there is a mars bar overload at hand) and also to the joys of joy.

    moo moo, i salute you!

    snow, thanks for allowing your fine blog to be a part of my mother-daughter relationship restoration campaign.

    • 3 JJ June 8, 2010 at 8:59 am

      what we have here is more than an entry about salad. you have brushed the dust from the family table and uncovering the iridescent memories of the meals of yore. this is more than some old oprah wisdom. you brought someone back to they roots and therefore you’ve got skills. you should get paid for your services.

  3. 4 smoo June 8, 2010 at 11:46 pm

    It would be a very hard mother who could ignore such a plausable and delicate plea. Jo – I suspect that your mother will always be as readily entertained by the excuse(s) as she will be to forgive and profess her undying love and support. I hope it will always be so.

    This blog, which encourages all to aspire to excellent and attractive food despite the sometimes difficult circumstances we face in the kitchen and elsewhere, feeds both souls and stomachs. And helps restores mother-daughter relationships. Bravo.

  4. 5 schlepseleh June 9, 2010 at 12:20 am

    happy birthday smoo. i realise mine is belated but in my defense, i am not your daughter (birth daughter that is) and so it wasnt so much a matter of forgetting but rather ignorance. some might say thats worse. but in any case i wish you a very happy birthday and there will be a muffin baked and/or eaten in your honour.

  5. 6 jo June 9, 2010 at 12:30 am

    i have some major work to do. and yet, there is no competing with a muffin.
    oh, would that i were in the confines of 3C, where berry would have confidentially reminded me of the cursed birth date, i’d not find myself in this deathly predicament!
    moral(s) of the story: never leave home!!

  6. 7 smoo June 9, 2010 at 8:37 am

    Solution to problem – come home soon! And read your emails properly in future. But mainly COME HOME SOON.

    Many thanks auntie for all your wishes and efforts and inspieration which are all always much appreciated.

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