Monday, October 19, 2009

Winter Squash and Sage Ravioli

We received some beautiful butternut squash and acorn squash in our CSA bag, and I wanted to do something special with them. This recipe offers an easier and faster way to make ravioli by using eggroll wrappers instead of more traditional pasta. I really liked the outcome, though, because it’s thinner and lighter than pasta. The sage-flavored squash puree is a great way to showcase these lovely sweet and savory fall flavors.

Source: Winter Squash and Sage Ravioli, Stonewall Kitchen Harvest

16-ounce package 6-inch-square eggroll wrappers (20 eggroll wrappers)
1 ½ cups Italian-Style Winter Squash Puree (recipe follows)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped, or 1 teaspoon dried
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons crème fraîche
⅛ teaspoon salt, or to taste
Whole sage leaves, for garnish

Place an eggroll wrapper on a clean surface. Using a small, dull kitchen knife, score the dough into 4 equal squares. (The idea is not to cut through the dough, but simply create lines that mark off 4 separate boxes.) Place 1 tablespoon of the squash puree in the center of each of the 4 squares.

Fill a small bowl with water and, using your finger, moisten the outer edge of the wrapper and the scoring lines. Place a second sheet of the dough on top. Using your fingers, pinch the dough together along the outside of the eggroll wrappers to seal them. Then pinch or press down the dough along the outline of each of the 4 boxes and in between them. (This seals together and creates 4 ravioli.) If there appear air pockets in the dough, use your fingers to seal a small circle around the filling so air will not get in. Use a pizza cutter or a knife to cut each of the 4 ravioli out of the dough. Repeat. (Don’t make the ravioli more than 1 hour before cooking, or they will dry out.) Place on paper towels, without stacking them.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt the butter. Add the sage and a generous grinding of pepper and cook over low heat for 1 minute.

Boil the ravioli, without crowding the pot, for 4 minutes, stirring to make sure they don’t stick. Carefully drain the ravioli and place on a large serving latter in one layer. (The ravioli are delicate and will stick to one another.) Pour the sage butter over the pasta and place a dollop of the crème fraîche on top. Sprinkle with the salt, season with pepper, and place the sage leaves in the middle as a garnish.

Italian-Style Winter Squash Puree
2 pounds winter squash, such as acorn, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons crème fraîche, heavy cream, or plain low-fat yogurt
3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, or 1 teaspoon dried
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut the squash in half and place flesh-side down on a baking sheet or pan. Roast for 30-40 minutes, until the peel gives slightly to the touch and the flesh is tender. Scoop the flesh from the peel into a bowl. Mash the squash with a potato masher. Stir in the butter and crème fraîche, and then add the cheese, sage, salt, and pepper.

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