Sunday, February 19, 2012

Butternut squash fries with ginger tahini dipping sauce

Whispering Pines Yurt
Winter has never been my favorite season. I decided to make it more enjoyable by trying something new this winter. I rented a yurt operated by Idaho Parks and Recreation, for an overnight stay. The yurt adventure was a hit with everyone, including the snow pups, Misha and Nika.

View from the yurt deck

Ritalin Boy (husband) and I used to go winter backpacking, using a pup tent. By comparison, the yurt was like being in the Hilton. It was definitely a step up. We snowshoed in about 2.5 miles with our gear in either backpacks or sleds or in the case of Ritalin Boy, both. This was not without mishaps. Ritalin Boy purchased a $3 sled to pull and it kept flipping over whenever we hit a sloped section of trail. I guess you get what you pay for when it comes to gear.

Misha and Nika look out yurt window.

Snow buddies, Misha and Nika, were in the height of their glory. I think they wanted us to stay at the yurt indefinitely or at least, until the snow disappeared.

Open privy

The most unique part about the yurt was the open privy. There was a great view of the clear night sky if you had any business to conduct there late at night. The trail down there was a bit treacherous because of icy conditions. The overnight temperature was 5 degrees so you really needed to go to make the trip.

Nika and Brian inside the yurt

The yurt was well equipped with comfortable furnishings, wood stove, propane lanterns and cook stove. Nika, my food crazy malamute, wanted everyone's food for herself but alas, she had to deal with disappointment that some of the food we hauled in was for us. Misha did the honors of hauling in the pups' food.

Butternut squash fries with ginger tahini dipping sauce
We enjoyed our yurt stay so much we plan to repeat the experience in March. In the meantime, I am trying to decide if we should just take backpacking food again or try something more gourmet. The kitchen was well equipped with everything needed to do some more adventurous cooking.

My idea of packing along some sweet potato and granny smith apple slices, and diced butternut squash for snacking, really hit the spot. Dipping the snacks in sunbutter made the perfect combination. 

All this yummy snacking filled my head with more ideas for butternut squash. I had to try making some butternut squash fries as soon as I returned home.

Butternut squash fries with ginger tahini dipping sauce

  1. 1 medium butternut squash
  2. olive oil
  3. sea salt
  4. pan spray
  5. 2 T. tahini
  6. 1/4 tsp. McCormick roasted ground ginger
  7. 1 medium carrot, peeled
  8. 1 tsp. agave syrup
  9. 1/4 cup water
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Peel and slice butternut squash into fry shapes. Smaller fries work better.
  3. Toss fries with olive oil and sea salt.
  4. Spread on a large cookie sheet spayed with pan spray.
  5. Place in oven for about 30 minutes. Rotate the pan and flip fries after about 15 minutes.
  6. In the meantime, prepare dipping sauce by blending the tahini, water, carrot, ginger and sweetener in a food processor. Note: Extra dipping sauce makes a great salad dressing for greens or fruit; or consider making kale chips with the sauce.
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    Jamie & Janice said...

    Okay, I am hooked...but where does one finf smoked ginger?

    Sheree Welshimer said...

    I found it in the spice section of my local market. It's from McCormick and called roasted ground ginger. I guess I goofed up when I referred to it as smoked. It's actually roasted ginger and very tasty. Sorry for the confusion.