The flesh of a butternut squash or pumpkin has the advantage of being yellow or orange in colour and therefore easy to disguise as hummus when turning it into a dip. This works well for the one of my children who likes hummus, and obviously less well for the other, who used to love hummus but has recently added it to the no list!
The recipe for this is based on an Ottolenghi recipe for a butternut squash and tahini spread. I used the recipe in his Jerusalem cookbook, one of my all time favourites, but it’s more or less the same as this one published in the Guardian a few years ago. It is for many reasons a perfect sneaky veg recipe as it hides the butternut squash completely from any picky eaters out there, yet loses nothing in flavour or taste as it’s designed to be eaten this way.
500g butternut squash and pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and cubed
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt (can be omitted if preferred or for under-ones)
1 clove of garlic, crushed
40g tahini paste
70g greek yoghurt
Date syrup and sesame seeds, optional
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Place the prepared squash or pumpkin in a large ovenproof dish, add the olive oil, cinnamon and salt and mix well. Roast for 40-50 minutes, stirring occasionally until soft. Allow to cool.
Use a food processor or a masher to combine the squash with the garlic, tahini and yoghurt until combined. This is really nice as a thick paste but if your child prefers a smoother texture then process for a little longer.
Either serve as it is or drizzle date syrup and sesame seeds over the top. The date syrup makes it taste a bit sweeter, but it’s still delicious without it.
Serve as a dip with vegetables or breadsticks, spread onto crackers or toast (great for baby led weaning) or as part of a mezze meal. Enjoy!