Sunday, March 4, 2012
Roasted Butternut Squash and Greens over Pasta
Hi, this is Bianca's mom again. My girlfriends and I got together this past week for one of our monthly birthday parties. I usually make the dessert but was assigned a vegetable dish this go round. As Bianca has stated previously in her blog, I usually don't like to go out to the store to buy ingredients but try to find recipes that match the ingredients that I already have on hand. This saves me a lot of running around, gives me some fun time to research recipes, and usually leads to some interesting meals. I had just gotten Lynne Rossetta Kasper's cookbook The Splendid Tables How to Eat Supper from the library thinking it would be my turn to pick our next cookbook for our cooking club but looks like my turn won't come until June for that club so I started combing through the book to see what I could make for the birthday dinner. This recipe looked interesting since it called for roasting spring greens along with the onions, garlic and butternut squash. I was a little skeptical since I have never roasted salad greens before but the worse that could happen would be that I wouldn't like it and then have to come up with a different recipe for the birthday bash. Utah Farms CSA has delivered fresh spring greens from Julie Clifford for the past 2 weeks so I had some on-hand along with a butternut squash, onions and garlic that I had in storage. For the pasta, I had some bow-tie pasta that I received as a gift (imported from Italy) but you can get local pasta from either Chidester Farms (at Dan's supermarkets) or Nu Nooz pasta at Harman's. We always have cheese on-hand from the multitude of our local providers so that wasn't a problem.
It is amazing how easy this dish is to prepare. I usually hate peeling, seeding and dicing a butternut squash but his cookbook gave a great tip on an easier way to do it. First, half the squash lengthwise and then place it cut side down on your cutting board. Cut it crosswise into 1-inch-thick slices. This makes it easier to trim away the peel and seeds from each slice. Wish I had known about this years ago.
All together, this dish took about 35-40 minutes to prepare with only about 5-10 minutes of prep time. Easy enough to handle for a quick, weekday meal.
3 to 3 1/2 pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 medium to large onion, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 big handfuls of spring greens (Utah Farms CSA)
1/3 cup basil, torn (www.farmersdaughterherbs.com)
16 large, fresh sage leaves (fresh from my garden)
5 large garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbl. tightly packed brown sugar
salt and pepper
1 pound bow-tie pasta or wide noodles
1/c cup half-and-half (Winder Farms)
1 to 1-1/2 cup shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Place one large shallow sheet pan in the oven to heat it up.
2. Bring salted water to a boil in a large pot.
3. In a big bowl, toss together the first 8 ingredients and generously season with salt and pepper. Being careful not to burn yourself, pull out the oven rack containing the cookie sheet and spread the vegetables evenly on the cookie sheet. Return rack to oven and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes, or until the squash is tender. Turn the vegetables one to two times during roasting.
4. Meanwhile, cook pasta in the salted, boiling water until al dente, which is tender but still firm. Drain.
5. When the squash is tender, turn the oven to broil to help roast and caramelize the vegetables. Watch the oven closely to prevent burning and turn often to roast all vegetables evenly. The greens will almost become crispy and the squash should brown a bit around the edges, about 5 minutes total broiling time. Remove for the oven.
6. Place all the vegetables in a large serving bowl. Add the hot pasta, half-and-half and one cup of the cheese. Toss well. Add more cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.
adapted from The Splendid Tables How to Eat Supper by Lynne Rossetto Kasper and Sally Swift
Posted by Bianca W. at 5:02 PM