Culinary Corner: Butternut Squash Shawarma Boats

Culinary Corner: Butternut Squash Shawarma Boats
By Charnie Kohn

There’s something about stuffing food that always gets me. I enjoy taking a simple vegetable like squash and seeing how I can elevate it. This recipe is a perfect example of how one vegetable can be transformed to an entire meal by stuffing it with protein and lots of flavor!

2 butternut squash
1 1/2 pounds ground chicken
1 onion, diced
1 tablespoon shawarma seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 of a teaspoon black pepper
1 can chic peas
1 cup pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup tahini paste
1 tablespoon lemon juice

1: Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Cut the butternut squash in half lengthwise, remove all the seeds and place skin side up on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes
2: While the squash is in the oven, sauté the onion with a bit of oil over medium high heat until golden. Add the ground chicken, shawarma seasoning, salt, garlic powder, black pepper, and use a wooden spoon to break the chicken apart. Cook until the chicken is no longer pink
3: Remove the squash from the oven and flip. Scrape off some extra flesh from the top to create a boat (this makes for some great baby food!) Add some of the chicken shawarma mixture to each squash boat and top with chic peas and pomegranate seeds
4: Combine the tahini paste and the lemon juice and stir well. Drizzle over the butternut squash boats

Note: Roast the chic peas with salt and pepper for some extra crunch
Note: This recipe yields four boats but can easily serve eight people if cut in half

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