November 08, 2007
Pasta with Butternut Squash

Here's a nice vegetarian fall dish that we made when Carl's dad was in town. We served it with a simple arugula salad on the side (Recipe: Swirl some mashed garlic in a bowl of olive oil with salt. Add plenty of fresh lemon juice and plenty of pepper. Go to the roof and pick some arugula. Toss.)

Pasta with Butternut Squash, Walnuts, and Sage

Peel your butternut squash and chop into 3/4-inch cubes. Toss in a roasting pan with melted butter and salt, and roast in the oven on high heat, tossing occasionally, for about an hour. You want the squash cubes to get good and caramelized.

Now you can put your pasta water on to boil.

Next, slice an onion pole-to-pole and cook in butter or olive oil over low heat in a saute pan until the onion is golden and soft, about 35 minutes. Set aside.

Now's a good time to start your pasta -- I'd suggest campanelle, gnochetti sardi, or some other short pasta with open nooks and crannies.

While the pasta is cooking and once your squash is nicely roasted, throw about a cup or so of broth or water into the squash roasting pan to sizzle and deglaze.

You also want to toast a good handful of walnuts in a dry saute pan (you can reuse the onion pan) until they start to smell good. Chop them up.

When the pasta's ready, toss with the squash and any juices, the onions, some grated pecorino or parmesan (pecorino would be better), and plenty of pepper. Top with the toasted walnuts. Just before serving, fry up a good handful of fresh sage leaves in some butter, and pour the buttery sagey goodness over your pasta.