14 February 2010

Squash Sauce with Pasta

One day there was a tupperware of leftover cooked squash and a bowl of half rotten shallots, so I invented a meal. Don't worry I only used the salvageable shallots. Yesterday I decided to try to recreate it - this time with a squash (whose name we've already forgotten; perhaps Ambercup, it was very vibrant red) that was beginning to rot.

The ingredients:

1 squash
1 large onion
3-4 garlic cloves
3/4 - 1 cup milk
Parmesan cheese

I cut up the squash, discarding the rotten bottom, into chunks that I threw into a pot of boiling water to cook. I didn't bother pealing off the skin cause I was hungry and that can take a while. I think the squash took less than 30 minutes to cook, but you can test for doneness periodically by stabbing a piece with a fork.

Meanwhile, finely chop some onions and caramelize them in some olive oil. This should take about 30 minutes. Ideally they should slowly turn a soft golden brown color, but I didn't cook mine long enough or at a low enough temperature, doesn't matter they were still delicious. At some point, after the onions have got a good head start add 3-4 cloves minced garlic.

Once your squash is soft, yielding to the caress of a fork, fish it out of the water and set it aside to cool slightly. Now add your pasta to the same water once it is boiling again (see this way you save water and energy). Once you can bear to touch your squash, you should dispose of the skin. Next add about 3/4 cup to one cup of milk to the onions, stir for a minute or two then add the squash and use a potato masher to mix it all up together into a sauce or thick paste; really you can control the consistency of the sauce by adding as much or little milk or water as you like. I typically prefer thicker sauces.
Ladle up some noodles and smother them with the squash sauce. The final note is a generous sprinkling of real parmesan cheese to accent the dish. Enjoy!

I actually like the flavor of the shallots in this dish better than onions, but I didn't want to go to the store this time. If you happen to have a little half and half or cream, a bit swig added in addition to the milk would add some richness. I also suspect adding some ricotta cheese might be tasty and add some protein power.

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