Yes, it has butternut! But this vegetable dish (with a little pasta!) is hearty and filling, not to mention healthy! It would be perfect to eat by the fireplace while it rains or even better, snows outside. Except I live in SoCal, so I’ll just pretend. I adapted the recipe from an Eating Well Meatless Meals cookbook I got last year. The original version is vegan, but I used chicken broth the first time I made it and beef broth this time. I think the beef broth brings out a nice, rich flavor that compliments the vegetables perfectly. Does it look like a hot brown mushy mess? Like most delicious comfort foods, a thousand times YES! (Think curry, stew, chili!) This recipe makes a HUGE portion so there will be plenty of leftovers! When I made it this time, the pasta got a little over cooked so if you like it more al dente I would let the veggies boil for a little while and then add the pasta after about 10 minutes.
Braised Winter Vegetable Pasta
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 sweet yellow onion, cut into thin rings
- 4 cups beef broth
- 1 1/2 cups white wine
- 8 ounces pasta shells, orrechiete or other small noodles
- 2 cups butternut squash, cubed
- 2 cups cauliflower florets
- 2 large parsnips, peeled and cubed
- 4 oz. baby bella mushrooms, sliced
- 8 oz. frozen edamame, peeled and shelled
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
- Heat oil over medium heat in large stock pan or large dutch oven.
- Add onions and cook until deep brown, softened and caramelized.
- Add beef broth and wine and bring to a boil.
- Add all veggies and return to a boil, stirring occasionally. Cook for about 10 minutes, then add pasta.
- Continue cooking over medium-high heat until all the liquid is absorbed and squash and pasta are tender.
Serve with grated parmesan and a crusty piece of french bread!
Ok guys, time for more butternut!
Thanks again to Trader Joes for inspiring me to make something far more delicious and nutritious than the microwave version I saw in the store! I couldn’t get the idea of a butternut and spinach gratin out of my head as soon as I saw it at TJs. I had to make it. And I’m SOOO glad I did! It’s warm, sweet, savory and cheesy. So basically it hits all the main taste groups except spicy! It’s even good for you. This would make a great new thanksgiving side dish, or a vegetarian main course. I was happy with it tonight served with a left over turkey burger!
Butternut, Spinach and Kale Gratin
- 2 lb. Butternut Squash, Peeled and sliced into 1/2″ thick pieces (the longer the piece the better)
- 1 1/2 16 oz package of frozen spinach or kale (or combination of both)
- 3 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 1/2 cups Chicken stock
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
- Salt, Pepper and Garlic Powder to taste
- Peel and slice the squash into thick long pieces as best you can. It’s hard but just try to make sure they are all about the same thickness.
- Defrost Spinach or Kale and squeeze out all the water. Squeeze out as much as you can!
- Sautee greens in olive oil until the water cooks out and it starts to stick. I used my dutch oven to minimize dish washing! Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste.
- Mix in 1/2 of the parmesan cheese and stir
- Set aside 1/2 of the greens. Smush the remaining half down in the bottom of the dutch oven so it is flat (or oven proof casserole dish if you don’t have a stove/oven safe pan).
- Layer 1/2 of the squash on top, arranging so there is an even layer on top of the spinach. It’s like a puzzle!
- Cover squash with remaining spinach and flatten.
- Make a top layer of the rest of the squash, as flat as you can. Pour chicken broth evenly all over the top.
- Cover with remaining parmesan and breadcrumbs. Spray with olive oil or cooking spray.
- Bake at 425, covered for 40 minutes or until squash is easily pierced with a knife. Uncover and bake for another 15-20 minutes until top is browned, bubbly and golden!