Butternut Ravioli with Hazelnuts and Parmesan

When we found out how easy it is to make ravioli–and with such completely impressive and delicious results!–Annie and Cait just had to share this fabulous harvest recipe with you.

This dish is a poem to autumn, filled with sweet, tender butternut squash combined with a touch of honey, fresh thyme, rosemary, sage, and Parmesan, and topped with chopped hazelnuts (or you could substitute
walnuts) and brown butter. This would work beautifully for any family feast or romantic, intimate dinner.

INGREDIENTS

1 2-pound winter squash, such as butternut, Hubbard, or turban
3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons honey
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh sage, plus whole leaves for garnish
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon walnut oil or hazelnut oil
1/3 cup hazelnuts or walnuts, chopped
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
pinch of freshly-grated nutmeg
1 pound purchased fresh thin egg pasta sheets (wonton wrappers will work)

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly oil a baking sheet. Cut the squash in half through the stem and lay the halves cut side down on the oiled baking sheet. Bake 50-60 minutes, until easily pierced with a knife. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Scoop out seeds and fibers and discard, then spoon the flesh into a mixing bowl. Mash squash with a potato-masher until smooth, then add breadcrumbs, 2 tablespoons Parmesan, honey, thyme, rosemary, chopped sage, and orange zest. Mix thoroughly and season with salt and pepper.

2. Warm the olive oil and nut oil over medium heat in a small frying pan and add hazelnuts or walnuts. Cook, stirring often, about 3 minutes, or until nuts are golden. Transfer nuts to a plate and set aside.

3. Melt butter in a medium saucepan until it turns brown and begins to smoke, 3-4 minutes. Remove immediately from heat, add nutmeg, and set aside.

4. Place a pasta sheet on a lightly floured work surface. Spoon mounds of filling on the sheet about 1 1/2 inches apart (the number of mounds you make will depend on the size of the pasta sheets you use). Lightly mist the mounds with a spray mister filled with water, then place a second pasta sheet over the first, covering the filling mounds, and pressing firmly around the edges and between the mounds to seal. Using a fluted cutting wheel or knife, cut between the rows of ravioli. Repeat with remaining sheets of pasta and filling.

5. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add ravioli and cook until tender, 2-3 minutes. To serve, reheat the browned butter. Drain ravioli and place in warmed serving bowl. Toss with butter, sprinkle with hazelnuts and 1/4 cup Parmesan. Garnish with sage leaves and serve immediately.

Serves 6 – 8.

Inspired by Williams-Sonoma Seasonal Celebration: Autumn, by Joanne Weir (Time-Life Books, 1997).

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