This has been one of my favourite things to cook on the barbecue so far this year. I love simple chargrilled vegetables, the flavours are amazing. The smokiness of the vegetables with the fresh tahini dressing and pomegranate seeds are a great combination. You can enjoy this as a salad on its own or as part of a bigger feast! I’ve served it with chunks of seared beef or lamb accompanied by a green leafy salad and a big bowl of herby quinoa.
I seem to be really drawn to pomegranate at the moment, I’m loving the little bursts of colour and flavour they give a meal, as well as the health benefits of being a good source of fibre, vitamins, iron and rich in antioxidants.
This recipe is so easy , if you prepare a large bowl of quinoa, roast plenty of vegetables and make the dressing you can store all these in the fridge and assemble an easy lunch or supper in minutes…perfect!
Don’t worry if you’re not into barbecuing or want to eat this when the weather is not so good. You can cook the vegetables in a hot oven, about 220ºC for about 45minutes, turning occasionally until softened and browned.
For the vegetables;
about 250g butternut squash
2 red pepper
4tbsp olive oil
1tsp chilli flakes
salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the dressing;
150g natural Greek yogurt
30g light tahini paste
1 large garlic clove, crushed
small bunch fresh coriander
Wash the butternut squash, but there’s no need to peel it. Cut into very thin slices. (I tend to use the thinner end of the squash for this.) Cut the ends off the courgettes and cut lengthways into thin, about 5mm, slices. Cut the aubergine into 5mm thick discs. Deseed and cut the pepper into large chunks.
Pile the vegetables into a large bowl, drizzle over the olive oil, chilli flakes and season well. Toss the vegetables to lightly cover. I find its easier to use my hands!
Heat up the barbecue and cook the vegetables on each side until golden brown and cooked through. You may need to do this in batches and keep them warm.
Meanwhile place the yogurt and tahini in a bowl. Add the crushed garlic, grated rind of the
lemon and about 3tbsp juice. Season well and beat together until combined. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
Remove the seeds from the pomegranate and finely chop the coriander.
When the vegetables are cooked arrange on a serving plate. Drizzle the dressing over the top and sprinkle over the pomegranate seeds and chopped coriander. Season with a little black pepper before serving. This is great served warm, but any cold leftovers taste amazing too! Serve on its own or with herby quinoa and salad leaves.
Another great serving suggestion for the Tahini Dressing. Here, (pictured left) I’ve served it with oven roasted butternut squash and a lemony herb and seed quinoa with baby spinach leaves. It’s a delicious bowl of food, great for lunch or dinner. It also packs into a container for a great healthy lunch on the move. You can vary the vegetables depending on whats in season.
Tahini is a thick paste made from sesame seeds, well known as an ingredient in humous. It has a strong nutty flavour and a little goes a long way. Tahini can vary in flavour, the darker tending to be more bitter than lighter brands, so just add a little extra yogurt if you find the tahini too strong. Packed with protein, B vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, iron and calcium its a great addition to the diet. My favourite is Biona Organic Light Tahini but I also always have a jar of Cypressa in my cupboard too.