Hooray, my Christmas responsibilities are over for another year. And Christmas isn’t even really here yet. From now on I’m just a guest … But for my extended family Christmas this year (our party was yesterday) I was in charge of … ‘vegetables’. Elise did meat. Merryn did pudding.
I made four dishes. A bit of a middle eastern/italian fusion. My old favourite Abla’s green beans, and then roast pumpkin (for my Dad) and baked tomatoes (for me). Oh, and smashed potatoes with rosemary and olive oil (for everyone).
The roast pumpkin (officially roasted butternut squash and red onion with tahini and za’atar*) and baked tomatoes (officially baked tomatoes with baguette) were my first attempts at Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipes.
I made them because I went to Wendy’s the other week and she made a delicious pumpkin thing by him that had pomegranate molasses and was impressive. I was looking for THAT recipe and couldn’t find it in my last minute cooking rush, but I came across these. They sounded manageable, and I had the ingredients, and so … ta da.
And they were delicious. And ideal if you have to take vegie dishes to someone else’s house for Christmas. Because they are perfect to eat at room temperature.
I’m a convert. What I liked was that although the recipes sounded a bit complicated, the dishes really looked pretty speccy, and the basics were very straight forward. I found it was very quick and easy to get the vegies in the oven. It was just that you then had to make an interesting dressing that required a few ingredients. But really, pumpkin takes a hour to bake right, and you just had to mix some stuff together …
I really think Yotam might become a new good friend of mine …
*I substituted pistachios for the recommended pine nuts on the top of the pumpkin.