So it’s officially fall. That seems to be the common theme these days. Everyone is so pumped that the sweaty hot summer is over and we can all step outside and enjoy the fresh air. It is so hard not to become obsessed with this time of year. All I want to do is drink Pumpkin Spice Lattes, hang out at the Farmer’s Market, talk Halloween, and buy every spice-scented candle I can get my hands on.
I am majorly craving fall foods too! Aren’t we all? The squashes, figs, apples, etc call to me when I’m at the store. I want simmering pots of stew on the stove and apple crisps bubbling in the oven. But I don’t always have time for a well-thought-out, all-day cooking marathon. Who am I kidding? This year, I barely have time to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich! I still want to enjoy fall flavors, but I’ve had to get a bit creative on the timing.
One recent Sunday, I really wanted roasted squash. I had bought these fun curly noodles a while back and had been waiting for the perfect opportunity to use them. I decided to make a roasted squash pasta. It was easy and SO delicious. My husband kept commenting on it while we were eating dinner. It was so creamy and full of flavor. To be honest, it almost tasted like macaroni and cheese. I know, weird right? I could totally see tricking kids into eating squash by telling them it’s mac ‘n cheese. Alright, that might be evil, but with Halloween around the corner, it’s the perfect time of year for a little trick!
Roasted Butternut Squash Pasta with Pancetta
Adapted from Emeril Lagasse
2 small or 1 large butternut squash (about 3 pounds)
1/2 pound pancetta, cubed
1 shallot, sliced
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon fresh sage, chiffonade (sliced thin)
1/2 teaspoon salt, more for squash
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 pound pasta, cooked
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Sprinkle cut side with salt and place cut side down on an oiled baking sheet. Cover with aluminum foil and roast in the oven for 45 minutes or until tender. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Scoop out flesh of squash into a bowl.
In a medium saucepan, over medium low heat, add pancetta. Cook for three minutes and add the shallot and garlic. Cook for another three minutes and add squash puree. Raise heat to medium and cook for 8 minutes, stirring often. Add heavy cream and parmesan, and continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes, stirring often. Season with salt and pepper and add sage. Toss with pasta and serve immediately.