Thursday, December 29, 2011

Butternut Squash Pasta Casserole

I don't know about you, but each Thanksgiving-Christmas (they run together!) I end up searching for side dishes to bring to various pot luck style gatherings. I think we attended 8 this year? This was a baked dish I made for one of them and it turned out wonderfully!

This is very quick to throw together and you can serve it straight from the oven. It's nutty, warm, and slightly sweet - delicious! This would be a great meatless meal on it's own or a nice accompaniment for a hearty meat dish.

Butternut Squash Pasta Casserole
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced (I skipped)
1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (15-ounce) can light coconut milk
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon chopped sage
¾ pound dried whole wheat penne (I didn't use whole wheat)
½ cup chopped toasted walnuts
½ cup bread crumbs (I used Panko)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly oil a 9- x 13-inch casserole dish; set aside.

Heat oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add squash, coconut milk, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium low and simmer until squash is tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in sage and simmer 1 minute more. (This part can be made ahead, up to 1 day in advance.)

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until tender but still firm, about 8 minutes. Rinse in cold water, drain well and transfer to a large bowl. Transfer squash mixture to bowl with penne. Add walnuts, salt and pepper and toss to combine. Transfer to prepared dish and top with bread crumbs. Bake until just golden brown and hot throughout, about 30 minutes.

Recipe from Erin's Food Files

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