What do you do with too much squash?

| Sunday, September 26
I thought it was time again for a recipe post. I hadn't talked food in a while, and as the weather gets cooler, I get to cook more of my favorite foods. :)

The past few weeks have brought us many baby butternut squashes from our CSA share. I like the squash, yes, but I didn't know what to do with it other than roast 'em, mash 'em,  put 'em in a soup. (10 points for the reference!) I happened to be at Cost Plus World Market yesterday, and stumbled across a jar of Dave's Gourmet Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce. I thought, "Hey, I could do this!" so I bought some pasta I thought would work well (real Italian fusilli!) and some tomato paste in a tube (<3 that stuff) and went home to plan.

After looking at the few recipes I could find on the Web, I decided to make up my own. And it turned out to be amazing. So, if you're faced with an abundance of squash this winter, or just want to try something new, try it. You'll be pleasantly surprised. It's perfect. People seem to forget how common this veggie is in Italian kitchens this time of year!

Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce 

1 1/2 pounds butternut squash
2 cloves of garlic, cut in half and crushed with side of knife blade
1 medium bell pepper
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
Olive oil
Crushed red pepper flakes
Fresh basil

Preheat oven to 375F. Peel and seed the squash. Cut it into 1-2 inch chunks. Toss with olive oil, salt, black pepper, and nutmeg. (I just used about 1/2 t.of each the first go-round). Put squash and garlic cloves in a flat, rimmed baking pan. Roast in the oven for an hour.

Meanwhile, seed and dice the bell pepper. Saute it in a splash of olive oil. Then stir in the tomato paste. Set aside until squash is done roasting.

Remove squash and garlic mixture from the oven. Puree in food processor with about 1/4 cup of water to get desired consistency. Add in tomato paste and pepper mixture and about 1 T shredded fresh basil. Puree again. (This can leave a bit of the pepper texture if desired.) Add in salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste.

Use a short pasta that will hold sauce well. I used fusilli and it worked awesomely!
Move the sauce to a large serving bowl. Reserve about 2 T of the pasta water. Stir into the sauce, then stir in 1/2 lb of cooked pasta. Top with more shredded fresh basil and Parmesan cheese.

Enjoy!! If you don't like things spicy, leave out the chili flakes. If you like really spicy, add more than just a dash. Or throw in some Sriracha!


Amy said...

I am always looking for new squash recipes. I love them, but I get tired of just baking them or making them into soup. This sounds like a yummy one to try, thanks!

Angela said...

Ooo, that sounds yummy! Ever since Autumn started, I have had the urge to cook. I should try this. ^_^ This and pumpkin chili, which sounds om nom nom!

Ruth said...

That might actually work for us. Boy won't eat squash. He might be ok w/it pureed into a sauce.

Kara said...

I've been just recently discovering I'm a fan of squash in many forms, so even ProfX might like this! It's got a lot of herb-y flavor and sweet-saltiness that regular sauce has.

Anonymous said...

Nice! My dad's garden has produced A LOT of squash and we've been looking for recipes! This one looks amazing!

Melissa said...

There's only one way to eat a brace 'o conies!

But more than one way to use butternut squash :) This recipe looks awesome. Very timely for the fall, as well!

Tabs A. Geek said...

OMG... that sound samazing. Come cook for me?

Lesley said...

This. Was. Amazing! Thank you for sharing it - I just had to blog about it so my family could come and try it, too! http://www.thekarpiuks.com/karas-butternut-squash-pasta

SISSIE said...

I also bought this sauce at world market kind of expensive so was looking for the recipe thank you so much for sharing will try it today. Karen Pensacola FL

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