Quick Eats: Butternut Squash Ravioli

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It’s been a while since I’ve done a cooking/baking post for the blog, mostly because of my schedule and the majority of my meals being unremarkable (not that they’ve been bad, but they weren’t really worthy of their own post,) but tonight I put some time aside to plan dinner- and this post. I have to say that it feels really good to be back in the kitchen cooking up different things again and adding some variety & flavor to the mix. Butternut squash ravioli is a delicious and filling seasonal dish that is perfect for this time of year. My recipe comes in two parts, the ravioli itself and the sauce, and is also made from scratch- which results in the ravioli not looking perfectly squared and cut like the traditional store bought kind- but tasting 10x better.

YOU WILL NEED (RAVIOLI:)

* Immersion blender

* Rolling pin

* 1/2 Pre-peeled butternut squash (totaling 5 cups after being rinsed and cubed)

* 2 Cups chicken stock

* 2 Cups flour

* 4 Eggs

* 1/4 Teaspoon of olive oil

* 3 Tablespoons of butter

* 1/4 Cup of brown sugar

* 1/2 Cup of potato starch

* 1/4 Teaspoons of nutmeg

YOU WILL NEED (SAUCE:)

* 3 Tablespoons of butter

* 1/4 Cup of flower

* 16 oz. (1 pint) of light cream

* 1 Cube of chicken bouillon

* Shaved Parmesan cheese

* Pinches of salt, pepper, and nutmeg

OKAY, HERE’S WHAT YOU DO:

1. After rinsing and cubing the 5 cups worth of butternut squash, set it in 2 quarts of cold water and begin to boil on the stove. While the water is heating up, add the 2 cups of chicken stock. It’s going to take a little while for the squash to become soft and mushy, so you can work on making the dough for your pasta while you wait.

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2. Pour the two cups of flower on your baking surface. From there, add the 4 eggs, and begin mixing and kneading thoroughly until the dough begins to thicken in texture and consistency.

3. Add the 1/4 tablespoon of olive oil to the dough. Continue to knead. When the dough is thick and evenly mixed, rest a clean, damp cloth over it to keep it from drying out for about 10-15 minutes. Now you can focus on the squash again, which should be tender and ready to be strained by now.

4. After straining the squash and pouring it back into the pan, add the 3 tablespoons of butter, the 1/4 cup of brown sugar, and the 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg to the squash- and begin pureeing with the immersion blender.

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5. After pureeing the mixture for a few minutes, add the 1/2 cup of potato starch and continue using the immersion blender to mix it into your butternut squash filling. This will keep it from being watery or runny when you put it into the pasta and cook it. Once you’re thoroughly mixed everything together and your pureed squash has a rich consistency, feel free to do a taste test to see whether or not you want more nutmeg- and add whatever you feel is an appropriate amount (I just mixed in a couple more pinches to add a little more flavor.)

6. It’s time to go back to the dough. After flouring your rolling pin, roll the dough flat and cut into four inch strips. From there, scoop spoonfuls of squash along the strips of dough.

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7. Fold the dough over the spoonfuls of squash, creating pockets, and cut them into squares. Use a fork or your fingertips to flatten the edges around the squares, keeping the butternut squash filling inside the pocket and giving the ravioli it’s shape.

8. Set raviolis on a floured baking pan, and let them sit for 10-15 minutes while you mix the sauce.

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9. Using another pan, melt the 3 tablespoons of butter and gradually add the 1/4 cup of flour  and the 16 oz. of light cream. Begin to stir/whisk the ingredients together.

10. Add the 1 cube of chicken bouillon to the mixture, as well as pinches of salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Continue to stir/whisk until the consistency of the sauce is nice and thick. *IF THE SAUCE BECOMES TOO HEAVY, YOU CAN THIN IT OUT BY ADDING A LITTLE MILK TO IT.*

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11. While letting your sauce simmer, you can now add your ravioli to a pot of boiling water to finish cooking. When it’s done, strain the excess water from the pan and add the sauce to the pasta- making sure each piece is generously coated.

12. Serve the ravioli with the shaved Parmesan cheese and pinches of nutmeg for added flavor.

13. Spoon ravioli into face.

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These ravioli tasted so, so good, and were absolutely worth the mini-mess I made in my kitchen with the flour and brown sugar while I was preparing them.

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