Dinner Tonight: Roasted Fall Veggies with Tahini Dressing

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fall vegetablesRoasted Fall Veggies is a perfect way to take advantage of all the great seasonal vegetables, and it is a delicious side to roasted chicken. Adding chickpeas also makes this a meal that could easily be served as a light dinner alongside whole grain rice or quinoa. The meal offers tons of protein, fiber and antioxidants, thanks to cauliflower, Swiss chard, butternut squash and garlic.

But what makes this dish extra special is the tahini sauce made with fresh orange juice. You can drizzle this on any grilled or roasted vegetable and it would be a hit. You could also use the tahini sauce on sandwiches!

Roasted Fall Veggies with Tahini Dressing

• 1 small butternut squash
• 2 Tbsp olive oil divided
• 1 medium-sized head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized florets
• 1 head of garlic, separated into cloves and peeled
• 14 oz can chickpeas, drained
• 4 whole green onions, thinly sliced
• 2 cups of baby spinach or Swiss chard
• Sea salt to taste

Dressing

• 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 tsp coriander seeds
• 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
• 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
• 1 garlic clove, minced
• 1 small piece of orange zest
• 2 generous sprigs of fresh rosemary
• 2 Tbsp tahini
• 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
• 1/2 tsp sea salt
• 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 375F.

Cut butternut squash in half, lengthwise and scrape out the seeds, then cut each half lengthwise into 3 slices. Brush both sides with oil oil and place on a baking sheet. Set aside.

Place the cauliflower in a large bowl with the garlic cloves. Toss with remaining olive oil to coat and spread them out onto another baking sheet. Roast the vegetables in the oven for 35 to 45 minutes, rotating baking sheets halfway through roasting. Stir the cauliflower florets occasionally. Test the squash after 25 minutes, as it may take less time.

While the vegetables are roasting, prepare the dressing. Crush coriander, fennel, and peppercorns with a mortar and pestle. Place crushed seeds in a medium dry pan. Toast over medium heat just until warmed; do not burn or smoke. Remove from the heat and carefully add olive oil. Add garlic and orange zest and heat gently, just until oil begins to bubble around the edges. Remove from the heat and add rosemary. With the lid ajar, set aside to cool. Once cooled, strain into a bowl and whisk in tahini, orange juice, salt and pepper.

When vegetables are golden and tender crisp, transfer cauliflower florets to a large bowl. Toss with chickpeas and green onions. Fold in Swiss chard leaves until slightly wilted. Line serving plates with sliced squash, then spoon the cauliflower mixture over the top. Drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with sea salt.

Photo from here, with thanks.

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