Pasta has always been one of my favorite dishes. As I've been exposed to different cultures I've found that creating pasta has endless possibilities. Pretty much, anything goes or shall I say, anything can go into pasta. Be creative!
As I've explained in previous entries, I like to roast most of my vegetables before they enter into a recipe. The flavor becomes so sweet and earthy at the same time and improves the overall dish. For "October pasta of the month" I chose to roast butternut squash. It's almost as seasonal as pumpkins. The hard part is cutting up and peeling, but, it's so worth it!
This last weekend we got together with some dear friends, our traveling buddies. We've spent time together in Mexico and Italy and will be in Costa Rica by the end of the year. It's a great friendship and partnership. They even let me experiment on them in their beautiful kitchen. I precooked most of the ingredients beforehand, packaged them up for the drive and literally threw them together for our dinner together. My only regret is that I'm not familiar with propane stove tops (mine is electric) and almost succeeded in blowing up their house! Not good!
Anyway, we sat down to a wonderful meal with great friends. Salute!
2 cups pre -roasted butternut squash cut into bite size pieces
2 Italian sausages removed from casings and crumbled (I used hot)
3/4 c onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp fennel seeds, fresh fennel would be better
2 T olive oil
box of penne pasta
1 handful basil, fresh chopped
1 handful parsley, fresh chopped
2 handfuls Parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 c pasta water
2 handfuls pine nuts
drizzle of more oil
Roast the squash and set aside. Put sausage in skillet and brown, add oil, garlic , onion and fennel seeds. Meanwhile boil water for penne. When done, add the 1/2 c pasta water to meat mixture. Then add the drained pasta, stir together and add the butternut squash, basil, parsley, cheese and pine nuts. When completely mixed drizzle with more olive oil and serve with additional cheese and red chili flakes for more heat if you wish.