One of my absolute favourite vegetables is butternut. It is so versatile and can be used to create a myriad of side dishes that each a their own distinct flavour.
When I want to serve something impressive but still simple at the dinner table, I instinctively reach for this dish. Roasting butternut in large pieces intensifies the flavour and this method of turning it into a hasselback lowers the cooking time and adds flavour to every bite. If you don’t have harissa you can puree a red chilli with a little salt and 1/2 tsp of cumin powder to get the same earthy undertones.
Let’s get cooking…
Start by prepping your butternut. Usually I don’t bother to peel the butternut but in the this recipe it goes a long way if you do. Next cut the butternut in half and scoop out the seeds. Place each half on a chopping board with 2 wooden spoons on either side of the long edges, this is a quick trick to ensure you accidentally cut it all the way through. Cut thin slices across the length of the butternut and repeat with the second half.
Season generously with salt and pepper and roast for 40 minutes at 180C. After 40 minutes remove and baste all over with 3/4 of the harissa, honey and olive oil paste, making sure to get the paste into all the grooves.
Bake fore a further 10-15 minutes until the butternut is tender.
Remove from the oven, baste one last time with the remaining paste and serve!
Hasselback harissa butternut
• 1 large butternut
• 1 tsp harissa
• 1 tblsp olive oil
• 1 tsp honey
- Peel and cut the butternut into half then into thin slices without cutting it all the way down
- Season with salt and pepper and roast for 40 minutes at 180
- After 40 minutes remove from the oven and baste with the harissa mixture trying to get into all the grooves
- Pop back into the oven for a further 10 minutes
- Then baste again and serve