But if you asked me to pick a favorite fall vegetable sauce, easy.
Meet Mapley, Mustardy Tahini Sauce. Its name lists three—of four—ingredients. Add soy sauce and water, stir, and that’s it. You can add more tahini if you want a thicker version for a crudités platter. Or more water if you’d like it thinner for a dressing.
This recipe was developed in the interest of not making a recipe. Because we all have those nights (also known as Monday and, ahem, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday) when you don’t want to be roasting something while sautéeing something while chopping something while, uh, wait, what was that timer for? That’s when this comes in handy.
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Here’s the cheat sheet: fall vegetable + tahini sauce + something hearty = lunch or dinner.
Garlicky, sautéed kale + sauce drizzle + runny egg
Shaved beets + sauce toss + walnuts and crumbled feta
Shaved Brussels sprouts + sauce toss + torn croutons
ABC Kitchen's Butternut Squash on Toast
Even more than its ease, I love the way that its ingredients contrast each other: nutty, rich tahini against sharp, spicy mustard; salty, funky soy against caramely, sweet maple. Add all this up and you have a well-rounded, highly seasoned condiment that makes any vegetable seem purposeful and confident.
The sauce keeps dreamily in the fridge—that’s where I’ll be keeping batch after batch from now until springtime.
Emma is a writer and recipe developer at Food52. Before this, she worked a lot of odd jobs, all at the same time. Think: stir-frying noodles "on the fly," baking dozens of pastries at 3 a.m., reviewing restaurants, and writing stories about everything from how to use leftover mashed potatoes to the history of pies in North Carolina. She now lives in Maplewood, New Jersey with her husband and their cat, Butter. Stay tuned every Tuesday for Emma's cooking column, Big Little Recipes, which is all about big flavor and little ingredient lists. And see what she's up to on Instagram and Twitter at @emmalaperruque.