Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Butternut Squash Ravioli with Brown Butter, Sage, and Pecans

More and more I find myself skimming through the Williams Sonoma catalog these days and in addition to making a wish list of all the cool, new kitchen accessories that I want to get my hands on, I am finding recipe after recipe of great dishes that I want to prepare. And this month was no different.

Starting off, I should warn you in case you didn't know already that I am a sucker for the Fall. I love the change in weather, the cool mornings and warmer afternoons, the break from a sometimes too hot summer, the turning of the leaves, the rustling of them on the streets, the weekend trips to the pumpkin patch or to go apple picking, with donuts and hot cider a must! Obviously I could go on and on...

And the food is certainly no exception. There's mere comfort in just the mention of pumpkin-this, butternut squash-that, sweet potatoes, yams, and all other fall roots. To top it off, these vegetables most commonly pair with some of the most beloved of all kitchen staples - butter, cinnamon spices, and maybe a touch of sugar.

So this weekend after I thumbed through my catalog, we rolled up our sleeves and took a try at this autumnal squash-filled homemade ravioli. It sounded slightly intimidating, and looked too good to be true, but turned out to be fool-proof, delicious, and definitely a keeper for the recipe box.

What You'll Need...

For the filling:
16 ounces butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cubed
1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
   (or substitute 1/4 tsp ground cloves, 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon, and a pinch of nutmeg)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 oz. goat cheese

For the pasta:
3 eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups of all-purpose flour

For the sauce:
1/2 stick of butter
10 sage leaves
1/4 cup chopped pecans
Freshly grated parmesan

What to do...

Preheat oven to 400.

Place butternut squash on a baking tray and toss with Olive Oil. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of salt. Place in the oven and roast for 30 minutes.

Transfer the butternut squash to a bowl and mash with a fork. Add the pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon and site well to combine. Set aside to cool.

Whisk together the 3 eggs and 1/2 tsp of salt. Using a mixer, gradually add in the 2 cups of flour, little by little, until the dough comes together to form a ball (moist, but not sticky - if sticky add more flour). Knead the dough for 10 minutes on a floured surface, then let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

Divide the dough in half. Starting with the first half, roll the dough out to form a rectangle about 1/8 inch thick.

Moving inch by inch, place 1 tsp of filling onto the dough. Roll out the second half of the dough into the same sized rectangle, and place it on top. Lightly press around each filling to seal. Cut around the fillings to form square raviolis, and then crimp the edges of the ravioli with the back of a fork.

In a medium-sized frying pan, melt the 1/2 stick of butter. Add the sage leaves and cook until crisp, then remove.

Simultaneously, bring salted water to a boil in a medium-sized saucepan. Add the ravioli in small batches and cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and repeat until all of the pasta is cooked.

Gently place the cooked pasta into the melted butter and brown under low heat. Move to a serving platter and garnish the top with the fried sage, 1/4 cup chopped pecans, and grated parmesan.

Deliciously serves 4