Butternut Squash & Orecchiette with Kale & Brown Butter Walnuts

Butternut Squash & Orecchiette

with Kale & Brown Butter Walnuts

2 Servings
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  • with Orecchiette Pasta
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    From the Test Kitchen

    This gourmet, seasonal pasta showcases creamy roasted butternut squash—plus a garnish of walnuts cooked with fragrant rosemary in brown butter, which adds a final layer of rich, toasty flavor.
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    Dietary Information

    See nutrition facts for total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium information

    Vegetarian
    • Nutrition
      PER SERVING
    • Calories
      710 Cals (est.)
    View Full Nutrition
    Nutrition Label
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    fresh
    ingredients
    Butternut Squash & Orecchiette with Kale & Brown Butter Walnuts
    Title
    • 2 cloves Garlic
    • 1 bunch Kale
    • 8 oz Diced Butternut Squash
    • 1 bunch Rosemary
    • 2 Tbsps Butter
    • 2 Tbsps Crème Fraîche
    • 1 Tbsp Verjus Blanc
    • 1 Tbsp Capers
    • ¼ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
    • ¼ cup Roasted Walnuts
    • ¼ tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
    • 6 oz Chickpea Rotini Pasta
    time-saving
    tips & techniques
    Prepare & roast the squash
    1 Prepare & roast the squash

    Place an oven rack in the center of the oven, then preheat to 450°F. Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Line a sheet pan with foil. Place the squash and half the whole rosemary sprigs on the foil. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Arrange in an even layer. Roast, carefully stirring halfway through, 21 to 23 minutes, or until the squash is browned and tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from the oven. Carefully remove and discard the rosemary sprigs.

    Prepare the remaining ingredients
    2 Prepare the remaining ingredients

    Meanwhile, roughly chop the walnuts. Pick the remaining rosemary leaves off the stems; discard the stems, then roughly chop the leaves. Peel and roughly chop 2 cloves of garlic. Separate the kale leaves from the stems; discard the stems, then roughly chop the leaves.

    Cook the pasta
    3 Cook the pasta

    Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly and rinse under cold water to prevent sticking.

    Make the brown butter walnuts
    4 Make the brown butter walnuts

    Meanwhile, in a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat half the butter on medium-high until melted. Once melted, cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the butter is lightly browned. Add the chopped walnuts and chopped rosemary. Cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the foam subsides and the butter is fragrant (it should smell nutty and toasted). Transfer to a bowl; season with salt and pepper. Wipe out the pan.

    Cook the kale
    5 Cook the kale

    In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the capers and chopped garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until slightly softened. Add the chopped kale and as much of the red pepper flakes as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the kale is slightly wilted. Add the verjus (carefully, as the liquid may splatter) and 1/4 cup of water. Cook, stirring constantly, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the kale is wilted and the liquid has cooked off. Turn off the heat.

    Finish the pasta & serve your dish
    6 Finish the pasta & serve your dish

    To the pan of cooked kale, add the roasted squash, cooked pasta, remaining butter, and half the reserved pasta cooking water. Cook on medium-high, stirring gently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta is coated (if necessary, gradually add the remaining cooking water to ensure the pasta is thoroughly coated). Turn off the heat and stir in the crème fraîche until combined. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve the finished pasta topped with the brown butter walnuts. Garnish with the cheese. Enjoy!

    Tips from Home Chefs

    Prepare & roast the squash
    1 Prepare & roast the squash

    Place an oven rack in the center of the oven, then preheat to 450°F. Fill a medium pot 3/4 of the way up with salted water; cover and heat to boiling on high. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Line a sheet pan with foil. Place the squash and half the whole rosemary sprigs on the foil. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Arrange in an even layer. Roast, carefully stirring halfway through, 21 to 23 minutes, or until the squash is browned and tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from the oven. Carefully remove and discard the rosemary sprigs.

    2 Prepare the remaining ingredients

    Meanwhile, roughly chop the walnuts. Pick the remaining rosemary leaves off the stems; discard the stems, then roughly chop the leaves. Peel and roughly chop 2 cloves of garlic. Separate the kale leaves from the stems; discard the stems, then roughly chop the leaves.

    Prepare the remaining ingredients
    Cook the pasta
    3 Cook the pasta

    Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly and rinse under cold water to prevent sticking.

    4 Make the brown butter walnuts

    Meanwhile, in a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat half the butter on medium-high until melted. Once melted, cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the butter is lightly browned. Add the chopped walnuts and chopped rosemary. Cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the foam subsides and the butter is fragrant (it should smell nutty and toasted). Transfer to a bowl; season with salt and pepper. Wipe out the pan.

    Make the brown butter walnuts
    Cook the kale
    5 Cook the kale

    In the same pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the capers and chopped garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until slightly softened. Add the chopped kale and as much of the red pepper flakes as you’d like, depending on how spicy you’d like the dish to be; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the kale is slightly wilted. Add the verjus (carefully, as the liquid may splatter) and 1/4 cup of water. Cook, stirring constantly, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the kale is wilted and the liquid has cooked off. Turn off the heat.

    6 Finish the pasta & serve your dish

    To the pan of cooked kale, add the roasted squash, cooked pasta, remaining butter, and half the reserved pasta cooking water. Cook on medium-high, stirring gently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta is coated (if necessary, gradually add the remaining cooking water to ensure the pasta is thoroughly coated). Turn off the heat and stir in the crème fraîche until combined. Taste, then season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve the finished pasta topped with the brown butter walnuts. Garnish with the cheese. Enjoy!

    Finish the pasta & serve your dish
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