Delicata Squash Pan Roasted with Beets, Dukkah and Yogurt


I was re-introduced to dukkah this summer when my good friend Barb would regularly have it out as an appetizer. It is one of those magical foods that are more than the sum of its parts. At it’s most simple it transforms pita dipped in olive oil and lends many a fall root vegetable a savory, toasty, nutty accent. Roughly translated, dukkah means to pound. Traditionally the nuts and seeds would be crushed in a mortar and pestle. I usually use a food processor but be sure that the nuts are fully cooled or you will end up with more of a paste than a crumble. Crumble is what you’re after. The recipe will make more than you need. It will store for weeks.

  • 1 medium delicate squash
  • 1 small beet
  • ½ C yogurt
  • 1 bu flat leaf parsley or mint, leaves picked
  • ½ C hazelnuts
  • ½ C almonds
  • ½ C pistachios
  • 2T sesame seed
  • 1 tsp cumin seed
  • 1 tsp coriander seed
  • 1 T each dried mint, oregano and thyme
  1. In a 350F oven, toast the nuts and seeds until toasty and fragrant (about 10 minutes). I do this in separate batches because different nuts will toast at different rates. Sounds finicky but just use the same pan over and over again. It takes some time but not many dishes and is worth it.
  2. Allow nuts and seeds to cool completely
  3. In a food processor blend the nuts, seeds and herbs with a heafty pinch of salt until crumbly
  4. Peel the beet with a vegetable peeler and then grate on the largest hole of a box grater
  5. Cut the delicate squash in half lengthwise, scoop out the guts and then cut into ½ moons about ¼”thick
  6. In a large, heavy bottomed frying pan, heat a glug of neutral oil until just smoking
  7. Add the squash and season with salt
  8. Resist the urge to stir the squash, let it brown and bubble on one side and then flip to brown the other side
  9. Taste or prick a piece to see if it is tender all the way through. If not finish in the oven until it is.
  10. Remove the squash from the oven, toss with the raw, grated beet, parsley some olive oil and a pinch of salt
  11. Transfer to a serving dish, drizzle or dot with globs of yogurt and then sprinkle the dukkah over the whole lot