Butternut Hummus

Ottolenghi’s new book ‘Jerusalem’ is the newest addition to my ever-expanding cookbook collection (I totally gave up trying to quit that addiction). I became fan of Ottolenghi’s cooking after visiting Nopi and loved ‘Ottolenghi the cookbook’, so it was without any doubt that I ordered this new one.

I have to say I absolutely love Jerusalem. It’s full of little personal stories about the idea and culture behind certain recipes and it gives great suggestions for typical Jerusalem products and ingredients. Also, I really think the photography is so much better than in Ottolenghi the cookbook. The breathtaking views of Jerusalem make me want to travel there immediately and the recipe pictures are mouthwatering.

There’s a long list of recipes I want to try from this book, but the first one I made was this butternut squash and tahini spread, or Butternut Hummus as I call it. In the book it’s described as “a dip that’s fantastically popular with anyone who tries it” and I can only agree. The slightly bitter and salty tahini is delicious in combination with the sweet roasted butternut squash and hint of cinnamon.

The suggestion in the book is to sprinkle over some sesame seeds (didn’t have those) and date syrup or maple syrup (I choose the latter one). I thought the syrup would maybe make this dip too sweet, but I was wrong: instead it really seems to intensify the flavor and adds some extra deepness.

This dip is delicious as a starter or part of a mezze selection, serve it with some flatbread for dipping and it will be gone before you know it!

butternut hummus

Butternut Hummus (Ottolenghi’s Butternut & Tahini Spread)

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 70 minutes

Total Time: 80 minutes

Serving Size: 1 bowl


1 large butternut squash, peeled and cut into chunks (net weight about 2 lb or 970 gr.)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
4 ½ tablespoons (70 gr.) tahini paste
½ cup (120 gr.) Greek yoghurt
2 small garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 teaspoon mixed black and white sesame seeds (or just white)
1½ teaspoon date syrup ?(substitute maple syrup or molasses)
2 tablespoons chopped coriander, optional


  1. Heat the oven to 350F/180C. Spread the squash out on a medium-sized baking tray, pour over olive oil and sprinkle on cinnamon and salt. Mix well; cover the tray tightly with tinfoil and roast for 70 minutes, stirring once during cooking. Remove from oven and leave to cool.
  2. Transfer the cooled squash to the bowl of a food processor, along with the tahini, yoghurt and garlic. Roughly pulse so everything is combined into a coarse paste – you don't want it too smooth (you can also do this by hand using a fork or masher).
  3. To serve, spread the butternut over a flat plate and sprinkle with sesame seeds, a drizzle of syrup and finish with optional coriander.


(From: Jerusalem by Yottam Ottolenghi & Sami Tamimi)


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