Fall is really starting to settle in and I wanted to make something for dinner last night that embraced that. I found this recipe on Martha Stewart's website, it looked simple and yummy so I thought I'd give it a try.
What you'll need:
1 pound tubular pasta, such as strozzapreti or penne
1 butternut squash (2 pounds), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, thinly sliced
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 cup, fresh ricotta cheese
1. Fill a saucepan fitted with a steamer basket with 1/2-inch water and bring to a boil over high heat. Place squash in steamer basket and cook, covered, until easily pierced with the tip of a knife, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, cook butter, stirring, until melted and just beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add pecans and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted, about 3 minutes. Add squash and stir gently to combine; season with salt and pepper.
3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Generously salt water and return to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to pot. Add olive oil and parsley and season with salt and pepper; toss to combine.
4. Divide pasta evenly between 4 plates and spoon squash mixture on top of pasta. Sprinkle over parmesan and top each with a dollop of ricotta. Drizzle with olive oil and serve immediately.
You know what? It was just...kind of...meh. All of the elements on their own were lovely, especially the butternut squash and pecans in the brown butter. But the finished product was underwhelming. I can't see this working into my regular repertoire but if I did attempt it again I would probably add some shallots to the squash and perhaps some red pepper flakes to perk the whole thing up. Sorry, Martha. Maybe we'll have a winner next time!