No More Butternut Blues

My pantry is literally overflowing with Winter squash; multiple Butternut, Acorn, Spaghetti and Kobacha to be exact. I’ve used them roasted in enchiladas, mashed them, turned them into fries and offered them to neighbors… yet my stock seems forever bountiful in the worst of ways. Today I roasted a butternut with shallots, garlic and fresh sage and turned it into a sauce that I served over thick Thai noodles. Holy ‘what do you mean there aren’t leftovers’ delish dinner moment. And if you’re not into pasta I can imagine keeping the sauce on the thick side, putting a puddle of it in a shallow bowl and topping it with a nice piece of pan seared fish. Bon appétit.

Butternut Squash Pasta Sauce

1 medium butternut squash (about 1 1/2 pounds) 
1 tablespoon olive oil 
handful fresh sage, chopped
3 lg shallots 
salt 
10 cloves garlic
1 cup fat free half and half*
2 cups chicken stock 
pasta, for serving
Optional toppings: Grated cheese, chopped toasted walnuts, fried fresh sage

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Using a large, sharp knife, trim ends; halve squash crosswise to separate bulb from neck. Peel with a vegetable peeler. Cut both pieces in half lengthwise. With a spoon, scoop out seeds; discard. Cut squash into 2-inch chunks; transfer to a small rimmed baking sheet. 

2. Roughly chop shallots and add to pan along with garlic, toss with oil and sage; season generously with salt. Roast until squash is very tender, about 45 minutes, tossing once halfway through. 

3. Transfer vegetables to a food processor; puree. With motor running, add half and half through the feed tube; process until smooth. Add chicken stock; continue to process until totally smooth. Season again with salt if necessary. (If sauce seems to thick it can be thinned with a little pasta water.)

4. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Pour sauce over pasta; toss to coat. Serve with desired toppings.

*NOTE: Fresh rosemary or sage can be simmered in half and half for additional flavor.

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