This recipe started having an identity crisis from the moment I started thinking about how I wanted to make it. Developing the recipe, I decided I wanted squash, ginger and some kind of citrus in a hummus-like dip.
Clementines are still available in stores here, so they could be good. Throw in some garlic, olive oil, seasoning and you’re done.
Now, what to call it? Squash hummus? No, no beans in it. Squash dip? Squash dressing? Squash sauce? Um, but that’s not exactly sexy, is it? It’s also rather thick to be a dip. In the end I went with squash spread, which although not entirely better, does hopefully convey it’s truly luxurious texture.
With a hint of ginger and citrus, this golden-coloured squash spread is easy to make. I used Kabocha squash because I’m having a mad passionate love affair with it I like it, but you could try substituting pumpkin, butternut or Acorn squash if you can’t find it.
Kabocha squash is usually either red (sweeter) or green (less sweet, more savoury), with stripes, and the flesh ranges from yellow to orange and even to dark red, though it usually lightens when cooked. It’s sweet and dense (sort of “meaty”, but in a vegetarian kind of way).
Need a visual? Here is a red Kabocha squash that I cooked:
Though World’s Healthiest Foods mentions that Kabocha squash doesn’t need to be peeled, I always do because I find it tough. I usually cook the squash and then peel it though, because I’m often lazy when it comes to stuff like this.
I use a vegetable peeler to help it along, but it’s still very easy. You can either stick the squash in the oven whole (it will take longer to cook) or chop it into large pieces, de-seed it, and then cook it at 400 F for 40-45 minutes until incredibly soft.
Like most winter squashes, Kabocha squash offer lots of beta carotene, which is the precursor to vitamin A. It is important for the health of our eyes, immune system, heart, hair and skin. Vitamin A is also an antioxidant.
Citrus-Ginger Squash Spread
- 1 2/3 cup cooked the softer the better!, mashed Kabocha squash
- 1 large garlic clove finely minced
- 1- inch coin of fresh ginger finely minced
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 3 Tb clementine juice from about 2-3 clementines, freshly squeezed
- ½ cup high quality olive oil
Blend all of the ingredients in a food processor until luxuriously smooth.
Serve with fresh veggies, flatbread, crackers or anything else you like for dipping! I also love it on sandwiches (I may or may not have devoured it on a chicken burger a few nights ago…)
Tastes even better the next day and if the garlic is too strong the day you make it, it will usually be a lot milder the following day.
I hope you’ll like it. If nothing else, it’s gorgeous orange colour will make any winter morning or afternoon snack attack more bearable!
What’s your favourite way to eat squash?
Life is a plate… Eat up!