If I committed a terrible crime and were on death row heading for the electric chair and the warden asked me what I wanted for my last meal, this would be it. That said, I would have to make it myself…I have yet to find a restaurant version of Butternut Squash Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter that is better than this one so I doubt a prison cook is going to do a good enough job. Look at this delicate pasta, filled with roasted butternut squash, garlic, pine nuts and Parmesan. Exquisite! (complete printable recipe below)
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Just a Note:
I must say before we get started that this recipe is for the cook that loves a challenge! It is a little labor intensive…but I swear it is worth the time investment. Handmade pasta is so delicate and this filling is downright incredible. So put on some good music, clear a work space and if possible grab a friend. Pasta making is more fun with a partner!
Making Handmade Pasta:
There will be a lot of photos in this post because a picture is worth a thousand words, it will far easier to follow the instructions if you see the process first. We start by making the pasta. Flour, eggs, and a little olive oil is all you need. Combine in a bowl, this may take a few minutes. Once combined turn out on a floured surface and begin kneading.
Knead until dough is smooth and elastic, it should feel like play dough. Kneading takes about 8 minutes. Cover and chill in the fridge for about an hour.
While the Dough is a Chillin’ Make the Fillin’…
Working with butternut squash can be a challenge if you don’t have the correct tools. You need a ‘y’ peeler and a sharp knife. Of course you can always use a fresh, good quality, pre-cut butternut squash.
I roast the butternut squash and garlic on a rimmed cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. It makes for easy clean up!
Then I add fresh sage the last ten minutes of cooking. (your cookie sheet should be full, in this picture I was making a half batch)
The filling goes in the food processor with pine nuts and parmesan.
Give it whirl…
Roll out the Pasta:
I use a pasta roller attachment for my kitchen aid, it’s perfect for making pasta alone.(To see more pasta attachments click here) If this isn’t in your budget you can use a hand crank pasta maker , just know you need a friend to help. If you use the hand crank version someone needs to crank while the other feeds the pasta through the maker. Place rolled out pasta onto a well floured surface. I use a screen colander to sprinkle flour on my counter.
Place small spoonfuls (about 2 teaspoons) of filling just below the midline of pasta, spacing the filling about two finger widths apart.
Then dip your finger into water and make a ‘u’ with the water under each scoop of filling. The water will act as glue to hold the pasta together during cooking.
Fold pasta over so ends meet.
Then use two fingers to press the pasta together, starting on the sides of each scoop of filling and then seal underneath. This helps eliminate air bubbles.
Use a knife to gently cut ravioli into squares. I roll on my Caesarstone and have never scratched it doing this, but if you are worried use another surface. Place raviolis atop wax paper in a single layer, placing sheets of wax paper between layers as the sheet fills up. Make a 2nd, 3rd and possibly 4th batch of pasta.
Place one stick butter into a small pan on medium heat, butter will melt, then begin to bubble up. Stir occasionally and keep an eye on the butter. After 4-5 minutes the center will erupt in a caramel color. The butter is now browned. Immediately turn off heat and add chopped sage leaves. They will ‘fry’ in the hot butter and become crispy.
Always grate Parmesan fresh using a microplane.
The Recipe: Homemade Butternut Squash Ravioli with Sage Browned Butter
Tips and what you will need: always start with a clean organized space and take your time. Pasta making should be relaxing and fun! I use pasta roller attachment for my kitchen aid but you can use a hand crank pasta maker , just know you need a friend to help. If you are cutting your own squash you will need a ‘y’ peeler and a sharp knife. You will also need wax paper. (amazon affiliate links)
I must say before we get started that this recipe is for the cook that loves a challenge! It is a little labor intensive...but I swear it is worth the time investment. Handmade pasta is so delicate and this filling is downright incredible. So put on some good music, clear a work space and if possible grab a friend. Pasta making is more fun with a partner!
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 large whole eggs
- 3 large egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 5 cups butternut squash peeled and cubed (loosely fills cookie sheet)
- 4-6 cloves garlic peeled
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil give or take
- 10 whole sage leaves added the last ten minutes of cooking
- 2/3 cup of roasted pine nuts
- 1 1/2 cups parmesan cheese freshly grated (separated)
- sea salt pepper, to taste
- 1 stick butter
- 6 sage leaves chopped
Put 1 ½ cups flour in a large bowl, make a well in the center, add the eggs and oil.
Combine ingredients using your hands. This can take a few minutes. Once dough is combined, place on hard surface dusted with flour.
Knead, knead and knead some more until dough is smooth and feels like firm playdough, usually 8 minutes or so. (If dough is too sticky add additional flour a little at a time until it's not too sticky, if it's too dry dip your hand in water and flick some water on the pasta until dough becomes more pliable) When dough is elastic and smooth, form into a disk, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least an hour.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place rack in upper 1/3 of oven
Place peeled and cubed squash and garlic on a rimmed cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with enough olive oil that all squash is lightly glistening, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, toss. Roast at 400 degrees for about 50 minutes but set timer for 40 minutes, adding 10 sage leaves to pan for the last ten minutes of cooking.
When squash is done cooking remove from oven. Allow to cool for a few minutes.
Place all the ingredients on the sheet pan, 1/3 cup pine nuts, and 3/4 cup cheese in food processor and mix to a thick paste.
Place a large stock pot filled with water and 1 Tablespoon salt to boil
Place pasta maker on the left, then sprinkle hard surface with flour (this is where you will place rolled pasta) set a small dish of water and pureed squash filling next to area where the pasta will be, then place a cookie sheet lined with wax paper for finished raviolis on the right. (You will need 3-4 sheets of wax paper)
Pasta makers usually have 8 settings. You will start at the widest setting (on my pasta maker that setting is 1)
Shape 1/4 portion of chilled dough into a flat disk (put the remaining dough back in the fridge)
Run pasta through the pasta machine two times on the widest setting (usually 1) then roll it through twice again on setting 2, then twice on setting 3 etc...working your way up to 7. Stop at the second to last setting (usually 7) and only roll it only once on that setting. The thinnest setting (8) is too thin for ravioli.
Place rolled pasta on floured surface. Place butternut mixture by small spoonfuls onto pasta just below the midline, leaving a space of two fingers between each scoop of filling. (see photos above)
Dip finger in water and make a ‘U’ on pasta under each spoonful of filling.
Fold pasta over and press firmly (using two fingers) in between spoonfuls of filling, then seal pasta under filling (sealing the sides first and then the bottom prevents bubbling).
Use a knife to cut into ravioli shapes, placing each ravioli onto cookie sheet lined with wax paper in a single layer, separating each layer with more wax paper.
When all pasta and filling are used, set aside.
Place one stick butter into a small pan on medium heat, butter will melt, then begin to bubble up. Stir occasionally and keep an eye on the butter. After 4-5 minutes the center will erupt in a caramel color. The butter is now browned. Immediately turn off heat and add chopped sage leaves. They will 'fry' in the butter and become crispy.
Gently place raviolis in boiling water, it helps to have two people do this quickly. Cook for three minutes.
Gently strain in colander, do not rinse.
Place raviolis in large bowl, pour browned butter over ravioli, sprinkle with sea salt and garnish with remaining pine nuts and Parmesan cheese. Toss. Serve.
Look at this delectable free form pasta! And that browned butter…and that filling oh my goodness! Now you know why it would be my last request!
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