Tuesday, October 11, 2011

20 Dinners, 1 Day: Rigatoni with Apple and Squash

I had been looking forward to doing this one.  I love pasta, even though I don't make it nearly as much as I should.  Plus, add butternut squash to the mix and I'm there.

The bacon was tricky for this vegetarian.  I was originally going to make the recipe and add bacon just to Abe's portion.  But a recent cholesterol check made adding it maybe not such a good idea (he's had high cholesterol since his 20s, even though he's pretty fit).  So I improvise with using a bit of liquid smoke in olive oil to add some smoky flavor.

If you're not dealing with high cholesterol, I'd recommend using the bacon, though.  :)

The dish was very yummy and it was extra good the next morning for breakfast.  Hey, it was Adam's idea.  He did balance things out by having waffles and syrup for lunch that day.

The butternut adds a bit of sweetness and the apples and onions add the savory.  But I think the cheese makes the dish delicious, so don't skip it.  Not that I thought you would.

I didn't do the sage leaves this time because I didn't have them.  So, I sprinkled about 1/2 teaspoon of dried sage into the butter.  The idea of fried herbs intrigues me, so I will try it next time.

Rigatoni with Apple and Squash
1 lb. rigatoni pasta 
8 oz. bacon, thinly sliced 
10 sage leaves 
2 shallots, minced 
1 tart apple, sliced 
3 cups Roasted Squash, chopped 
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese 
Salt and pepper 
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Cook pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking water. In same pot, cook bacon until just crisp; transfer to paper towels. Add sage to hot bacon fat and cook until crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to plate. Add shallots and apple and cook, 5 minutes. Add pasta, squash, cooking water, bacon and parmesan; season with salt and pepper and toss. Top with crumbled sage and parsley.

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