Butternut Squash Rigatoni
This hearty and comforting dish captures the essence of the season, marrying the natural sweetness of roasted butternut squash with the savory goodness of Italian sausage and the earthy bite of fresh kale. Each forkful promises a perfect balance of textures and tastes, as al dente rigatoni cradles the velvety squash sauce, while the sausage infuses the dish with robust flavor. Whether you're seeking a cozy weeknight meal or aiming to impress guests, this pasta dish is a celebration of autumn's bounty, delivering a medley of warm, satisfying notes in every delicious bite.
- 1 medium Butternut squash, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 head of garlic
- 3 tbsp Chef's Life Cooking Oil
- 1 lb Spicy Italian Sausage, casings removed
- 1 lb Rigatoni noodles
- 1/3 cup gruyere, shredded
- 1/3 cup extra sharp cheddar, shredded
- 1 bunch of Kale, roughly chopped
- Salt and Pepper
- To Serve: Chef's Life Finishing Oil, Toasted Breadcrumbs, Chopped Parsley, Finishing Salt
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Cut the top off of the head of garlic.
- Drizzle the squash and garlic with 2 tbsp Chef's Life Cooking Oil , 1 tsp kosher salt and pepper. Wrap the garlic in aluminum foil.
- Roast the garlic and squash on a large sheet tray, cut side down, for 30 minutes or until the squash is fork tender.
- Heat 1 tbsp of Chefs Life Cooking Oil in a large pan over medium high heat. Add the sausage and brown for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and crumbling the sausage as you go. Remove the sausage to a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Drain out all oil
- Boil rigatoni in salted pasta water until al dente. Drain and reserve 2 cups of pasta water.
- Add the flesh of the butternut squash and roasted garlic to a blender and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. If you have a hard time getting the puree to blend add 1/2 cup of pasta water at a time until you reach your desired consistency.
- Pour the squash puree into the saucepan with the sausage on medium heat. Stir in the cheese until melted, followed by the kale.
- Add the pasta, and a splash of pasta water. Mix to combine.
- To serve, I like to add toasted breadcrumbs, chopped parsley, a drizzle of Chef's Life Finishing Oil and a pinch of flakey salt to my bowl of pasta. Enjoy!