Monday, November 2, 2009

Not Exactly Health Food

In a fit of ambition, I made the unilateral decision that we would be eating butternut squash ravioli, and nothing could dissuade me. I dutifully tracked down a recipe that looked reliable and did my homework to the best of my ability.

Throwing caution (and my resolve to eat more carefully) to the wind for the evening, I dove into the fray -- and I'm so glad I did! 

I could not believe I had made these! They are, I grant you, a LOT of work, but I feel so accomplished now. It's not the healthiest dish, but it's so rich you don't need a plateful to feel satisfied.
I'm not sure how I pieced together the restraint to keep myself from eating the filling straight out of the pan with a spoon, but I did somehow. {The filling was so fantastic, in fact, I feel it's a little wasted only on ravioli. A fuzzy concept forms in my little head of some sort of butternut squash lasagna. More to come if I decide to make this a reality.}

The brown butter and sage sauce wasn't anything special, but it didn't overpower the filling, and the sage was so delightfully crispy!

Give this recipe a try if you're feeling daring. It was fabulous! (And in case you're wondering, yes, I did take this particular picture myself. Don't let that deter you. It will be delicious, and it will be pretty. Promise!)

Butternut Squash Mezzaluna Ravioli
in Sage Brown Butter
recipe adapted from Emeril Lagasse (find the original here)

9 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. minced shallots
1 c. roasted butternut squash puree
salt and pepper to taste
3 Tbsp heavy cream
3 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
pinch nutmeg
wonton wrappers (3” rounds) {you can also use fresh pasta of your own (or even someone else's) making, but I'm a lazy bum, and pretty intimidated by making fresh pasta. Someday...}
1 egg, beaten
6 - 12 fresh sage leaves
1 amaretto cookie, finely crushed

Melt 1 Tbsp butter in saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot and sautee one or two minutes until tender. Stir in squash puree and cook 2 - 3 minutes. Add salt and pepper, then stir in cream. Cook 2 minutes more, then remove from heat. Stir in parmesan and nutmeg.

Now start assembling the ravioli: Dip your fingers in the beaten egg and run it around the edge of the wonton wrapper a little more than halfway. Place about a teaspoon of the squash filling in the center and fold the wrapper gently in half to seal. Start with the outer edges and work your way up, being careful to squeeze out any excess air, but not squeeze out the filling. (It might take you a few tries, but you can do it. Find a method that works for you.) Set aside and repeat until all the filling is used -- I had about 30 ravioli.

Cook the ravioli in simmering water about 2 minutes, or until they float to the top and are light in color. Drain and set aside.

In a large pan, melt the remaining 8 Tbsp. of butter over medium heat.  Drop in sage leaves and let cook until butter begins to brown. Remove from heat and serve over the ravioli. Sprinkle lightly with crushed amaretto cookie.

To make your own butternut squash puree, follow these simple steps:
1. Heat oven to 350
2. Split squash in half lengthwise and scoop out pulp and seeds.
3. Lightly sprinkle with salt and thyme
4. Place on greased baking sheet and cover with foil (you can also line the pan with foil if you want, but I think that's a waste).
5. Put in oven and let roast for 40 minutes or so, until squash is fork-tender
6. Let cool.
7. Gently scoop the flesh of the squash out of the skin and place in blender or food processor. Blend until smooth.

**Note: my blender didn't do so well with this, so I'm thinking a food processor would work best. You can also use a mixer to mash the lumps out of the squash.


  1. That sounds delicious! But where does one obtain roasted butternut squash puree? Does it come in cans? Should I be prepared to roast my own squash?

  2. Good point, Rachel. I've updated the post with some directions for making your own. :)

  3. I also discovered that some grocery stores carry butternut squash puree in the freezer section.


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