Lemme have a piece of that
It isn’t that the Omnivore dislikes squash. Don’t tell him, but…he actually likes it, a lot. And he eats it more frequently than he realizes. Lucky for me, he reads this blog far less frequently than he eats squash, so he’ll probably have downed 6 or 8 more helpings of this (hated) vegetable before my secret is out.
Squash is just a nasty-sounding word. That’s all. So, I try to avoid saying it when it is on the menu to be eaten. Just the other night, I was chopping up butternut squash for the recipe posted below, and the Omnivore swaggered through the kitchen, eyed the chopping block, and said, “Lemme have a piece of that.”
I gave him the side-eye. First, it is squash. It is raw. He hates the word squash. It isn’t meant to be eaten raw. Dare I spill the beans and say, “No! It is raw squash!” Dare I risk him hating dinner because I let him try this starchy, hard, and bitter raw pumpkin?
I quickly turned my body in front of the cutting board to deflect his interest.
But he persisted. And so I said, “Omni – it would be like eating a raw potato. I don’t think you’d like it.”
And then he said, “Mmm. Can I have another?”
And at that very moment, I knew if he liked this squash raw, the recipe was going to be a winner when I actually got around to cooking the stuff.
Warm Butternut Squash and Chickpea Salad (4 servings; adapted from SK, who adapted from other sources)
1 medium butternut squash (about 2 to 2 1/2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1 medium garlic clove, minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups chickpeas
1/4 of a medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley
1 medium garlic clove, finely minced with a pinch of salt
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 tablespoons well-stirred tahini
4 tablespoons water
Combine olive oil, allspice, and minced garlic, and salt with cubed squash. Roast squash pieces at 425* until fork tender, stirring the squash 2-3 times during the 30 minute cooking period. Remove from oven and let cool.
Combine chickpeas and chopped parsley in a large serving bowl bowl.
Make tahini dressing in a separate bowl. Add squash to chickpeas.
Combine half the portion of the dressing with chickpea mixture and reserve remaining dressing for heavier tastes.