Friday, January 25, 2013

Creamy Butternut Squash Spaghetti

Mark this down as one of those happy surprises.  One of those "I'm-intrigued-but-I'm-just-not-sure-this-is-going-to-work" recipes.  When I saw it on Skinny Taste last fall and read Gina's claims about it tasting like it was full of butter and cream (without any cream and just a little butter) I thought "yeah, right" and I tucked it away in the recesses of my brain.  Then I stumbled onto a giant package of peeled and diced butternut squash for an unbeatable price at Costco so I gave it a try.  Gina isn't kidding!  I fed this to my squash-hating husband and he had two heaping helpings before stopping long enough to ask what was in it.  Sam scarfed it down while happily kicking his legs and licking his fingers.  I've served it several times since that night and have always been very pleased with the results.  Give this a try!

Spaghetti with Creamy Butternut Leek Parmesan Sauce
(from Skinny Taste - click here for the original recipe)

1 lb butternut squash, peeled and diced
1 tbsp butter
8 oz spaghetti
1 large leek, thinly sliced (white part only)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
4 sage leaves, sliced thin
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add butternut squash and cook until soft.Remove squash with a slotted spoon and place in a blender, blend until smooth.

Add pasta to the boiling water and cook according to package directions for al dente, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water before draining.

Meanwhile, in a large deep non-stick skillet, melt the butter, sauté the leeks and garlic over medium-low heat until soft and golden, about 5 - 6 minutes. Add pureed butternut squash, season with with salt (don't undersalt!) and fresh cracked pepper and add a little of the reserved pasta water to thin out to your liking. Stir in parmesan cheese and sage and mix in pasta until well coated.

Serve with additional parmesan cheese on the side.

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