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Christmas Nibbles - Smokey Squash & Pepper Stars with a Caper Herb Dip

One of our favourite festive nibbles - simple to make and the caper and herb dip complements the sweet smoky squash.

Smoky Squash and Pepper Stars with a Caper Herb Dip

Smoky Squash and Pepper Stars

Prep and cooking time: 45 minutes | Baking Time: 10 minutes

Dietary: Vegan | Makes 12


  • 400g butternut squash, peeled and diced
  • 2 red peppers, diced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 50g roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 sheets of filo, each cut into 12 squares


  1. You will need a 12 hole cupcake baking tin.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 220C/200Fan.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a baking tray and roast the butternut squash and red pepper for 30 minutes untilsoft.
  4. Roast the hazelnuts in the pre-heated oven for 8 minutes, then cool and rub off the skins and roughly chop.
  5. Mix the roasted squash, red peppers, chopped roasted hazelnuts, grated mozzarella, smoked paprika and thyme together.
  6. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  7. Place the 3 sheets of filo on top of each other and cut into 12 equal squares.
  8. Brush the indentations in the cupcake baking tin with olive oil.
  9. Take 3 squares of filo at a time. Brush each one with olive oil and lay them overlapping each other to form a 12 pointed star shape.Gently press the filo star shape into the cupcake baking tin. Divide the filling into 12.
  10. Place a spoonful of filling into the middle of each filo star.
  11. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes or until golden. Check regularly, as they brown easily. Leave to cool for a few minutes before eating and serve with caper herb dip.

Caper and Herb Dip

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cooking Time: 5 minutes

Dietary: Vegan, Gluten free | Serves 4


  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 tbsp capers, rinsed and dried on kitchen paper
  • 1 garlic clove, sliced
  • 10 sage leaves
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 2 tbsp parsley, chopped


  1. Fry the capers in the olive oil until they pop open and have lost their moisture.
  2. Add the garlic, and sage leaves and fry until the garlic is soft and the sage leaves are crisp and the capers are crisp.
  3. Add the lemon juice and zest and stir in the chopped parsley.

Delicious food photography by Rob Wicks of Eat Pictures.

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