This month, chef Josh Katz shared his delicious recipe for hassleback butternut squash with shallot confit walnut tarator. His new book, Berber & Q on Vegetables, focuses on the simple vegetable and will show you how to barbecue, grill, roast, smoke, pickle and slow-cook your way through this summer.
Hasselback is a technique for cooking potatoes originating from Hasselbacken, a restaurant in Stockholm where the dish is alleged to have been first served. The potatoes are sliced at intervals but kept connected at the base, and then roasted in clarified butter until crispy on the outside but soft and tender within. This brilliant technique works on a number of different vegetables, including swede and sweet potato, but this is a favourite.
FOR WALNUT TARATOR
- 80g (2¾ oz) walnuts, toasted
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- 120g (4½ oz) Greek yoghurt
- ½ bunch of coriander, shredded
- 20g (¾ oz) sumac
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Flaked sea salt and ground black pepper
- Remove the skin from the walnuts by rubbing them briskly, then chop to a medium crumb, retaining some texture.
- Combine the chopped walnuts with the rest of the ingredients for the tarator, fold through and adjust the seasoning to taste with salt and black pepper.
FOR BUTTERNUT SQUASH
- 1 butternut squash, cut in half lengthways
- 80g (2¾ oz) unsalted butter
- 120ml (4 floz) olive oil
- Rosemary and thyme sprigs
- 4 confit shallots
- 2 tbsp toasted jasmine rice, coarsely ground
- 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted
- Few tarragon sprigs
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F)/180°C Fan/Gas Mark 6.
- Make incisions into each butternut squash half, at intervals of roughly 2mm (1/16in), about two-thirds of the way into the flesh and along its entire length.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat, add the olive oil, rosemary and thyme sprigs, and cook for a few minutes to infuse.
- Dip and roll each squash half in the butter to generously coat. Lay the squash halves alongside the other in a cast-iron pan or roasting pan, season generously with salt and black pepper, and roast in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour, basting regularly with the excess butter mix. The squash should caramelize as it roasts and become soft and unctuous. 5 Once cooked all the way through and meltingly soft, transfer the squash to a plate and garnish with a dollop of walnut tarator, some confit shallots and sprinkle with ground toasted rice and toasted pumpkin seeds. Finish the dish with some picked tarragon leaves.
Words Josh Katz
Photography James Murphy