Butternut Squash Pasta with Romaine & Apple Salad

Butternut Squash Pasta

with Romaine & Apple Salad

50 MIN
4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

At the heart of tonight’s comforting pasta dish is a delightful seasonal ingredient: butternut squash. We're small dicing it, then cooking it to a nearly creamy consistency to complement the richness of the brown butter sauce. (Chefs, when browning your butter, be sure to take it off the heat just as it starts to smell nice and nutty—this prevents burning.) Fresh rosemary, fried until deliciously fragrant and crispy, contrasts wonderfully with the sweetness of the squash. A refreshing salad of crisp lettuce and crunchy apple rounds out the meal.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    620 Cals (est.)
fresh
ingredients
time-saving
tips & techniques
Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Heat a large pot of salted water to boiling on high. Pick the rosemary off the stems; discard the stems. Cut off and discard the ends of the squash; using a knife, peel the squash. Separate the neck and bulb; halve the bulb lengthwise, then scoop out and discard the pulp and seeds. Small dice the squash. Peel and mince the garlic. Remove and discard the kale stems; roughly chop the leaves. Cut off and discard the romaine roots. Separate the leaves. Quarter and deseed the lemon. Core and thinly slice the apple; top with the juice of 2 lemon wedges. Crumble the cheese.

Fry the rosemary:
2 Fry the rosemary:

In a large, high-sided pan (or pot), heat a thin layer of oil on medium-high until hot. Once the oil is hot enough that a pinch of rosemary sizzles immediately when added to the pan, add the rosemary in a single layer. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until crispy and fragrant. Using a slotted spatula, carefully transfer the fried rosemary to a paper towel-lined plate. Carefully discard the oil.

Brown the butter:
3 Brown the butter:

In the same pan, heat the butter on medium-high until melted. Cook, stirring frequently and swirling the pan, 2 to 3 minutes, or until browned and nuttily fragrant. (Be careful not to overcook, as the butter can burn easily.) Transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the pan.

Cook the vegetables:
4 Cook the vegetables:

In the same pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the squash; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes, or until slightly softened. Add the garlic and kale; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Turn off the heat.

Cook & finish the pasta:
5 Cook & finish the pasta:

While the vegetables cook, add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook 9 to 11 minutes, or until just shy of al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly. To the pan of vegetables, add the cooked pasta, browned butter, half the reserved cooking water and the juice of the remaining lemon wedges; season with salt and pepper. Cook on medium-high, stirring vigorously, 2 to 3 minutes, or until thoroughly combined. (If dry, gradually add the remaining cooking water to achieve your desired consistency.) Turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving dish. Set aside in a warm place.

Make the salad & serve your dish:
6 Make the salad & serve your dish:

To make the vinaigrette, in a small bowl, combine the vinegar and mustard. Slowly whisk in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until well combined; season with salt and pepper to taste. In a large bowl, combine the romaine and apple. Season with salt and pepper. Add enough of the vinaigrette to coat the salad (you may have extra vinaigrette). Toss to coat; season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving dish. Garnish the finished pasta with the cheese and fried rosemary. Serve with the salad on the side. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Heat a large pot of salted water to boiling on high. Pick the rosemary off the stems; discard the stems. Cut off and discard the ends of the squash; using a knife, peel the squash. Separate the neck and bulb; halve the bulb lengthwise, then scoop out and discard the pulp and seeds. Small dice the squash. Peel and mince the garlic. Remove and discard the kale stems; roughly chop the leaves. Cut off and discard the romaine roots. Separate the leaves. Quarter and deseed the lemon. Core and thinly slice the apple; top with the juice of 2 lemon wedges. Crumble the cheese.

2 Fry the rosemary:

In a large, high-sided pan (or pot), heat a thin layer of oil on medium-high until hot. Once the oil is hot enough that a pinch of rosemary sizzles immediately when added to the pan, add the rosemary in a single layer. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until crispy and fragrant. Using a slotted spatula, carefully transfer the fried rosemary to a paper towel-lined plate. Carefully discard the oil.

Fry the rosemary:
Brown the butter:
3 Brown the butter:

In the same pan, heat the butter on medium-high until melted. Cook, stirring frequently and swirling the pan, 2 to 3 minutes, or until browned and nuttily fragrant. (Be careful not to overcook, as the butter can burn easily.) Transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the pan.

4 Cook the vegetables:

In the same pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the squash; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes, or until slightly softened. Add the garlic and kale; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes, or until wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Turn off the heat.

Cook the vegetables:
5 Cook & finish the pasta:

While the vegetables cook, add the pasta to the pot of boiling water. Cook 9 to 11 minutes, or until just shy of al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly. To the pan of vegetables, add the cooked pasta, browned butter, half the reserved cooking water and the juice of the remaining lemon wedges; season with salt and pepper. Cook on medium-high, stirring vigorously, 2 to 3 minutes, or until thoroughly combined. (If dry, gradually add the remaining cooking water to achieve your desired consistency.) Turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving dish. Set aside in a warm place.

6 Make the salad & serve your dish:

To make the vinaigrette, in a small bowl, combine the vinegar and mustard. Slowly whisk in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until well combined; season with salt and pepper to taste. In a large bowl, combine the romaine and apple. Season with salt and pepper. Add enough of the vinaigrette to coat the salad (you may have extra vinaigrette). Toss to coat; season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving dish. Garnish the finished pasta with the cheese and fried rosemary. Serve with the salad on the side. Enjoy!

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