Here’s a secret. Ok, it’s not that much of a secret, but I don’t think it’s terribly widely known. Butternut squash is sweeter than pumpkin. Pumpkin, if you’ve ever tasted it out of the can, isn’t really sweet at all. That’s why pumpkin recipes always have soooo much sugar in them. Butternut squash has a naturally sweet taste, like sweet potatoes, so they’re delicious plain. I would make more things with butternut squash rather than pumpkin, but it’s more expensive, and less convenient to work with. Butternut squash you can buy whole or cut up, but then you have to roast it and puree it before it can be a pumpkin substitute. No one has time for that. Except apparently me, even though I have two quizzes and a midterm this week. Good decisions, Julia, good decisions. However, even though this dish took a little extra time to prepare, it was totally worth it! This dish is delicious, and it’s always nice to incorporate seasonal flavors into my weekly meals.
Butternut Squash Kale Pasta
Makes 6 servings
8oz pasta of your choice (I used a mix of white fiber and whole wheat spaghetti)
2 1/2-3 cups butternut squash, chopped into about 1 inch cubes (I bought it pre-cut, but this would probably be about one whole butternut squash)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 bunch kale, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
1 cup Parmesan cheese, plus more for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 400˚F.
Toss the butternut squash with the olive oil and Italian seasoning. Spread the pieces on a baking sheet and bake for 17-20 minutes, until the pieces are easily pierced with a fork. Set aside to cool.
Cook the pasta according to package instructions. Add a little oil to the water when you cook the noodles so they don’t stick together.
Once the butternut squash is relatively cool, puree it in a food processor until smooth. Add more olive oil if necessary to get it smooth. Add in the Parmesan cheese and pulse a few times until it is distributed. This is your sauce.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, place the chopped kale with a couple spoonfuls of water and cover to slightly steam-cook and wilt the kale. Place the drained noodles top and stir to distribute the kale. Add the butternut squash sauce and stir till the noodles are coated with the sauce. Serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!