Creamy butternut squash pasta infused with brown butter and sage

I’m really excited to share this new fall favorite. I’ve always used butternut squash for soups and roasting but never for pasta sauce, but I was blown away by how good this sauce was. What could go wrong with roasted onions, carrots, garlic, brown butter and sage? The answer is nothing can go wrong in case you weren’t figuring it out. Squash being the main ingredients makes this sauce smooth and velvety. Then you get the sweetness from roasted onions and carrots. Last but certainly not least the roasted garlic and the sage infused brown butter come out to say hello with a flavor explosion so beautiful that a tear will come to your eye. It’s pretty darn good. Lets take a walk through how you’re going to make the best b nut squash pasta of your life.
Walkthrough
We’re going to kick this off by cutting the butternut squash in half. Lay the squash on it’s side then cut a slice off the top and the bottom to create two flat surfaces. Stand the squash up with the skinniest part facing up. Place a chef knife at the center of the flat cut surface, gripping the handle with one hand and using the other hand to force the blade down through the center of the squash. Scoop/scrape the seeds and guts out. Peel the carrots, onions, and garlic. Cut the carrots and onions into large chunks. Place the squash, onions, carrots, and garlic on a sheet pan then coat with olive oil and salt. Bake in a pre heated oven for one hour.
Meanwhile, melt one stick of butter in a sauté pan until milk solids (the white foamy part) start to turn brown. Remove pan from the burner, toss the sage leaves into the brown butter, remove them to plate lined with a paper towel when they begin to darken and get slightly stiff. They should be crispy like a chip and will make a great garnish. When the squash is done scoop it out of its shell into a large sauce pan along with the onions, carrots, and garlic. Add the brown butter and a small amount of vegetable stock. Blend with immersion blender until smooth. You should be able to part the sauce down the middle without it running back together.
Time to cook the pasta! Reserve one cup of pasta water on the side to help emulsify the cheese at the end. Once pasta is drained return it to the pot you cooked it in along with the butternut squash sauce, 1/4 cup of freshly grated parmesan, a few grinds of black pepper, and a splash of pasta water. More pasta water may be needed if pasta looks like its soaking up all of the sauce. Plate the pasta then garnish with crispy sage leaves and parmesan cheese.
Q&A
 
How do I know if my squash is fully cooked?
Poke it with a fork or a knife. A cooked squash should be very soft.
 
Do I have to use spaghetti for this recipe?
No, it’s just what I had handy at the time. Any type of pasta will work.
What if I don’t have an immersion blender?
You can use a food processor or a blender, but remember to be very carful because pressure builds up very quickly when blending hot liquids. This is the reason I use the immersion blender for the blending of any hot liquids.
How do I cut a butternut squash in half?
Tools
Ingredients
2 1/2 lb butternut squash, cut in half with seeds removed
2 medium sized onions, cut in chunks
1 large carrot, cut in chunks
5 garlic cloves
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup vegetable broth
1 stick of unsalted butter
Handful of sage leaves
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 box whole grain spaghetti, cook using instructions on box
1 cup pasta water
Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the squash, onions, carrots, and garlic on a sheet pan then coat with olive oil and salt. Roast in the oven for 60 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, melt one stick of butter in a sauté pan until milk solids (the white foamy part) start to turn brown. Remove pan from the burner, toss the sage leaves into the brown butter, remove them to plate lined with a paper towel when they begin to darken and get slightly stiff.
  3. When the squash is done scoop it out of its shell into a large sauce pan along with the onions, carrots, and garlic. Add the brown butter and vegetable stock. Blend with immersion blender until smooth.
  4. Mix the pasta with the butternut squash sauce using the pot you cooked the pasta in. Add 1/4 cup of freshly grated parmesan, a few grinds of black pepper, and a splash of pasta water. Mix all of the ingredients together until everything is cohesive. More pasta water may be needed if pasta looks like its soaking up all of the sauce.
  5. Plate pasta. Top with freshly grated parmesan and crispy sage leaves.

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