penne with butternut squash and goat cheese
I finally – finally!! – remembered to bring my camera along when I was cooking for my clients last week. There are so many fabulous recipes I’ve made for them and every week I curse myself when the dishes are finished but I have no camera. I’ve been tempted to whip out the ol’ iPhone when something turned out particularly well, but haven’t yet had the gumption to do that.
I make five dishes for each client, per week. I try to choose dishes that have a couple of easy ones to balance out the more time-consuming; this pasta dish was one of the easy ones. It’s so fast to make – minus the roasting time of the squash, but that’s just time you can use to get some other things done while dinner’s cooking! The best part is that you don’t even cook the sauce, you just mix the goat cheese with the hot pasta water, toss all the ingredients with the sauce and voila! A delicious dinner on the table!
- 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 3/4-inch cubes (I buy the pre-cut if I’m short on time)
- 1 onion, diced
- olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound penne pasta
- 1 cup (8 ounces) goat cheese, crumbled
- 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted
- 1 packed cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- 1/3 cup finely grated parmesan
Put an oven rack in the upper third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Spray a baking sheet liberally with cooking spray. Mix the squash and onion together and arrange in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bake for to 40 to 45 minutes until the vegetables are golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
While the squash mixture is cooling, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and reserve about 2 cups of the pasta water. Mix goat cheese and 1 cup of hot pasta water in a large serving bowl until the cheese has melted and forms a creamy sauce. Add the pasta, squash and onion mixture, the walnuts and the basil; add additional water if too dry. Toss well and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Garnish with parmesan and serve.
recipe adapted from the food network