This sweet and subtly spicy Harissa Roasted Kabocha Squash Hummus is perfect for your next snack tray.
Proper meals have been a bit of a challenge for me lately, but my snack and baking game seems to have risen to new heights. If it’s grab-and-go or can plunge me into the state of mind that baking so often brings, getting into the kitchen feels like a breeze. Which is why, hummus has been making a regular appearance in my kitchen. But I haven’t always liked hummus. In fact, for years I avoided it. The texture was rough and unappealing, and the flavour was bland and yet somehow overpowering. Hummus, for the most part, is a new found love in my life. A love I discovered while in Berlin (of all places) last year. After exploring the Neue Synagogue, spending some time at Hackescher Markt, and hanging out in the most inspiring art galleries, we stumbled upon Hummus & Friends, an Israeli restaurant that has wooed the bellies of Berliners.
After all of the heavier German food we’d been eating, I was primed for lighter, vegetarian fare. We weren’t able to stay that day, but after reading the reviews and talking to local friends about it, we excitedly ventured back to the neighbourhood with the purpose of eating there. It was everything one could dream about when it comes to simple Israeli fare. And like the reviews suggested, the hummus was out of this world.
It’s hard to find hummus like that where I currently live, but I’ve learned to approximate it with a few tips from Ottolenghi. His classic recipe calls for cooking the chickpeas with a bit of baking soda to help them break down and become meltingly soft. He also pairs the chickpeas with an unprecedented amount of tahini–two tricks that I think make it creamy, luxe, almost ethereal. For this recipe, I didn’t want to mess with what so clearly is the best out there. I just wanted to put a seasonal spin on it that our family would love. Harissa and kabocha squash have previously made a happy appearance on my blog with much success, so I thought why not try to bring these two together? Just in time for this year’s Virtual Pumpkin Party, I snuck this hummus in. The hummus is just a sneak peak at the Ultimate Fall Harvest Board I’ve been working on for the past few weeks. That, in all it’s glory, will be up here in a couple of days. But for those of you with huge pumpkin love I didn’t want to wait!
Head on over to Cake Over Steak for the full list of pumpkin-themed recipes. There are some brilliant contributions this year. I’m particularly awestruck by Kelly’s Rosemary Pumpkin Biscuits with Smoky Mushroom Gravy, these Pumpkin BBQ Cauliflower Wings (wat?!), this Pumpkin Banana Yogurt Cake with Pecan Brittle Buttercream frosting, this fall harvest pumpkin-carrot blender juice (and really everything that Brewing Happiness does), Liz’s Pumpkin Butter Thumbprint Cookies with Whiskey Caramel Sauce Drizzle, Sara’s Pumpkin Protein Waffles, and OMG this Pumpkin and Hazelnut Tart with Toasted Marshmallow.
Don’t forget to come by in a couple of days for your Ultimate Fall Harvest Board recommendations, video and all.Print
Harissa-Roasted Kabocha Squash Hummus
The sweet and spicy combination is always a winner. Make this Harissa Roasted Kabocha Squash Hummus for your next snack tray. Barely adapted from this Ottolenghi hummus recipe.
- Prep Time: 45 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 servings
- Cuisine: Middle Eastern/American
- Scant 3/4 cups dried chickpeas
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 8 cups water
- Medium kabocha squash (aka buttercup squash), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 tbsp olive oil, plus more to thin and serve
- 2 tbsp your favourite harissa paste
- 1/2 cup light roast tahini
- 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 6 tbsp ice-cold water, plus more as needed to thin
- Kosher salt (see instructions)
- Soak chickpeas overnight (or, alternatively, cook the same day in an instant pot or pressure cooker according to the manufacturer’s directions).
- Next day: If using the stovetop, place soaked, drained chickpeas, baking soda, and water in a large pot over high heat. Bring to a boil. Cook skimming off any foam that arises, until the chickpeas are very tender, but not mushy. The process will take anywhere from 20 to 60 minutes, depending on type and freshness of your chickpeas. Drain the chickpeas and set aside.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425°F and place squash cubes on a parchment-lined baking tray.
- Drizzle with olive oil and harissa and sprinkle on a generous pinch or two of salt. Using your hands, toss everything together.
- Bake squash on middle rack for 15 minutes. Remove from oven, toss and return to oven until cooked tender and golden, approximately 10 minutes. Allow to cool. Set aside one cup and reserve the rest of enjoying over salads during the week.
- Add chickpeas to a food processor and run it until a stiff paste forms. Add in the tahini paste, lemon juice, garlic, and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Process until well-incorporated. Add 1 cup of roasted squash and process until very little squash bits remain. If the mixture is stiff, drizzle in the 6 tbsp of ice water and continue to process until you get a very smooth and creamy paste. If at any time the mixture feels too thick, alternate adding in ice water and olive oil 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Season with more salt and lemon, as needed.
- Transfer to sealed container in the fridge where it will keep for a week.
- If eating right away, spoon it onto a plate or bowl and create a small well around the circumference of it. Drizzle with your best olive oil and garnish with sweet or smoked paprika in the centre. Serve with pita, crackers, and crudités.
The hummus will keep in a sealed container in the fridge for a week.