I tried out a new recipe over the weekend.....it was one of the many recipes that I wrote down weeks or months ago and I have no clue where I got it from **note to self start writing down where or who I get recipes from**.......anyhow.....Have you ever had butternut squash pasta sauce?? DELISH!! I have bought butternut squash sauce (pre-made) and I have made it from scratch while in Culinary school but I never tried it with sausage or fresh spinach stirred into it. So when I saw this recipe I had to keep it to try. THANK-GOODNESS I did!! I loved it and have already bought another butternut squash to make it again in a few days.
This recipe is also a fairly healthy recipe.....depending on what type of sausage you use and how much parmesan cheese you use.
1 lb spicy italian sausage (you could probably use regular italian sausage too but I like the spicy type)
1 lb butternut squash, peeled and diced**
1 TBS butter
1 lb pasta of choice
1/4 cup shallots or small onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
2 TBS parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp dried crushed sage
salt & pepper, to taste
**microwaving your the whole squash for 1-2 minutes will make cutting and peeling easier**
Bring a large pot of salted water (a few dashes of salt is enough) to a boil. Add the peeled and chopped butternut squash and cook until soft. Remove squash with a slotted spoon, saving water for pasta. Put squash into a food processor or blender; pulse until smooth.
Bring the saved squash water back to a boil, add more water if needed and cook pasta al dente as directed on package. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water when draining noodles.
Meanwhile in a deep sided skillet sauté sausage until no longer pink, breaking it up into small chunks. Spoon cooked sausage onto a plate and set aside. Drain if you are wanting to save on calories, otherwise continue on with directions ;-)
In the same skillet add 1 TBS to skillet and sauté shallots/onions and garlic until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in pureed butternut squash and a little bit of reserved pasta water until the sauce consistency is to your liking....I used just a little less then the reserved 1 cup of water. Add salt & pepper to taste. Stir in spinach, parmesan cheese, sausage and sage.
Toss in pasta and mix to coat.
Serve with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, optional