Winter Squash, Tahini, & Hazelnuts

Over the past week I’ve wondered what the market employees think of us:
Are they feeding a small army? Do they own livestock? Are they on a cleanse?

All possible answers to: where the heck is all that squash going?


We’ve been buying and testing a lot of squash recently. Specifically, we like squashes with edible skins. They're hard enough to cut - no need to mess around peeling, too!

4 squashes with edible skins

Delicata - smaller, easier to cut, with a balance of sweet and nutty flavors.

Red Kabocha* - Very sweet and creamy.

Green Kabocha - Dense and nutty. Less sweet than red kabocha.

Kuri* (or red hokkaido) - A balance of nutty and sweet, similar to delicata.

*Pictured below - red kabocha bottom left of frame, kuri top right.

For this recipe, we think the kuri squash works best. That said, probably any squash would work, including butternut (but make sure to peel that one).

Besides adding to the feeling of fall, squash provides a lot of B vitamins, Vitamins A and C, and carotenes, which are good for heart health and protective against cancer. (Murray, 2005)

Winter Squash Salad with Tahini and Hazelnuts



  • 1 Kuri squash, seeds removed and cubed (~ about 3 lbs.) Feel free to sub with other winter squash.
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 fennel, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 4-6 cups of salad greens. We've been using Little Gems.
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts
  • 1 bunch radish, thinly sliced
  • 10-15 leaves of basil, thinly sliced

Tahini dressing

  • 1 Tbsp tahini
  • 6 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced (about 2 Tbsp of juice)
  • 1-2 tsp water, to thin
  • Sea salt to taste


  1. Arrange oven racks on lower shelves. Preheat oven to 425ºF.
  2. In a bowl, combine squash with oil and salt and mix to coat.
  3. Roast squash for 20-25 minutes. Rotate pan and roast for 5-10 more minutes. Remove pan and flip the squash pieces. Return to oven and roast for another 10 minutes, or until tender and starting to brown ~ about 45 minutes total.
  4. While squash is roasting, combine fennel and lemon juice in a bowl to marinate.
  5. During the last 8 minutes of roasting the squash, place hazelnuts in the oven to toast.
  6. Remove hazelnuts and squash from oven and allow to cool for a bit. Once hazelnuts are cool, coarsely chop.
  7. Make the dressing - combine ingredients in a jar and shake well.
  8. Assemble the salad. We mix the greens, radish, and fennel together to make a base, and top with the squash, basil, hazelnuts, and dressing.

References: Murray, M., Pizzorno, J., Pizzorno, L. (2005). The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York, NY: Atria Books.

Photography team on the West Coast. Mostly working with companies and magazines in the food world. Our clients are proud of their product, story, or mission (or all three), and we help them produce their idea into a reality.