Moro's Warm Squash & Chickpea Salad with Tahini

January 21, 2014
12 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

This is a salad that eats more like a gratin, without the cheese hangover. As Food52er Ameliorator put it, "It's vegan, but warm and filling and never leaves you thinking it would have been improved with bacon." Adapted slightly from Casa Moro by Sam and Sam Clark (Edbury Press, 2005). —Genius Recipes

What You'll Need
  • 2 pounds pumpkin or other winter squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • 14 ounces canned or home-cooked chickpeas, drained
  • 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped (soaked in cold water for 15 minutes if you want to soften the bite)
  • 4 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed to a paste with a pinch of salt
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons tahini paste
  • 2 tablespoons water, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  1. Heat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Toss the squash with the garlic, allspice, olive oil, and some salt and pepper.
  3. Place on a tray, optionally lined with parchment, in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until soft. Remove and allow to cool slightly.
  4. While the squash is cooking, make the tahini sauce. Mix the crushed garlic with lemon juice and add the tahini. Now thin with the water and olive oil, and check for seasoning. You should taste a balance between the nutty tahini and lemon.
  5. To assemble the salad, place the squash, chickpeas, red onion, and cilantro in a mixing bowl. Pour on the tahini sauce and remaining oil and toss carefully. Season with salt and pepper.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Mae
  • Cheryl
  • ItsBrooksie
  • LittleMissMuffin
  • Monica Maloney Heidler
    Monica Maloney Heidler
Genius Recipes

Recipe by: Genius Recipes

54 Reviews

Jmolaei December 3, 2023
Very good! Used Sohla el-Wayll’ys green tahini sauce from her Start Here recipe for Chilled Green Tahinin Soba. Also used minimal oil for the squash, less than 1 T, and no additional oil when adding the tahini sauce. Red onion added nice crunch in contrast to the soft squash & garbanzos.
Will definitely make this again.
BBB November 22, 2023
Sounds so good that I'm making to bring to a Thanksgiving dinner. Trying this for the first time so I hope everyone likes it. I will have to double or triple the recipe. Wish me luck!
Bqgagliano March 12, 2023
I made this with Yams (a purple Japanese and a sweet potato), added some lemon zest and a few teaspoons of toasted sesame seed oil. This was amazing… I’m going to be trying it with pumpkin, butternut squash, acorn squash and delecatess squash. Home run recipe!
ButiButi December 3, 2020
Very good! We used quick pickled red onion instead of fresh, because my kids LOVE pickled red onion but can't handle fresh yet. Served over rice and lettuce and it was a complete meal. We also topped with feta.
ButiButi December 3, 2020
Very good! We used quick pickled red onion instead of fresh, because my kids LOVE pickled red onion but can't handle fresh yet. Served over rice and lettuce and it was a complete meal. We also topped with feta.
Sallyann T. January 26, 2019
I also crisped half the chick peas and roasted the red onion and added some Aleppo pepper. . Other than that left the recipe intact. Very good served over greens, the next time will be over quinoa. I used butternut squash, not sure how much but the recipe is forgiving.
Blue O. November 28, 2017
The squash instructions are ambiguous. Is it two pounds before peeling and cleaning, or two pounds of chopped squash?
Anita November 28, 2017
Hey Blue Okra, when I've made this in the past I've bought a squash that was two pounds before peeling and cleaning. That being said, I've bought squash that was much smaller and much larger and it's always ended up being very tasty. :)
cookinalong September 16, 2017
I've made this several times and it's wonderful as written. But here are a few variations that were also great for anyone who can't resist tinkering with a recipe! I've added roasted fennel to the mix with good results. We're not fans of red onion (or any raw onions, to be accurate) so I left it out, but doubled (at least) the garlic in the dressing and added some lemon zest along with the lemon juice and subbed Aleppo pepper for the black pepper. Topping it with toasted pepitas gives it crunch and extra nuttiness!
Mae June 29, 2017
This was really easy and yummy! I used carrots instead of squash and lime instead of lemon because that's what I had. Definitely adding this to my "Easy weeknight meals" list!
Melissa K. January 10, 2017
It was good but mushy. I'd try it again though maybe mix it up w more crunch. Thinking toasted walnuts might be good. It's a good way to use up our abundance of winter squash!
Cheryl November 11, 2016
Fabulous! I made my own allspice with cinnamon, cloves & nutmeg; love the flavor it gives. I cooked butternut squash on parchment paper on convection at 425 and it got a bit browned, which was good. Chopped almost the whole onion fine and put it on the tray in the oven for the last 5 mins or so. I didn't add the chickpeas since I used leftovers from Olive Braised Chickpeas (with GF pita) on this site as another dish on my plate. It was an indulgent, delicious meal.
ItsBrooksie September 20, 2016
Learned the hard way that this can't be made with frozen butternut squash. It turned to complete mush when I tried to toss the roasted squash with the other ingredients.
Ali W. September 18, 2016
Great flavors, but I agree that it came out a bit mushy. Next time I'll roast the chickpeas to get some crunchiness in there
JORJ November 11, 2015
Made this tonight to a rave review. Not sure why but my squash got very soft by 20 min and almost seemed like it steamed rather than roasted. Next time I may use two roasting pans. I added celery and grated ginger to the dressing. Yummy! I think next time I may also roast the seeds and add them as a topping.
LittleMissMuffin October 30, 2015
I love this dish especially with the chickpeas and red onion both roasted (separately). I'm trying to figure out a way to make finger food out of it for a wine tasting party. I thought I could use toothpicks and thread one piece of yam/squash in between two chickpeas, then top with red onion, cilantro and a drizzle of dressing but the chickpeas split down the middle. Any ideas. Lettuce cups would be too big and messy
kaleandsalt November 13, 2015
I would coarsely mash the squash and chickpeas together with minced red onion and maybe an egg to bind it, shape into croquettes, and fry. Serve drizzled with dressing on a toothpick!
Monica M. October 26, 2015
Love this one. I fix it all the time for lunch. I’ve swapped out the other veggies with the dressing and just love it. It’s awesome with purple cabbage, the butternut and chickpeas….
bluemoon March 9, 2015
I made this last week and it was my first time preparing spaghetti squash and I was surprised that I had a hard time peeling the squash. I am sure there's a technique somewhere that I should have googled. Also, I needed to add more water to liquify the dressing. It was delicious and l look forward making it again (with another winter squash!).
CWA22 February 23, 2015
Disappointed - this had such rave reviews I perhaps had too high expectations. The consistency is a little mushy. If I made it again I would roast the squash more briefly at a higher heat. The flavor is pretty good but very mild; I would increase the spices next time as well.
RaquelG January 7, 2015
For those who mentioned they would like some crunch, you can roast some of the chickpeas - just toss with the same marinade as the squash, and roast at 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes or so. Remove from oven to cool and carry on with the rest of the recipe - add at the end. This way you get the crunchy texture without altering the recipe.
ortolan December 20, 2014
Moro was the most delicious restaurant I went to in Europe my last trip. So excited to know they have a cookbook, and thank you for the recipe!