Fettuccine with Roasted Butternut Squash, Brown Butter and Sage

  • 1 small butternut squash, about 2 pounds
  • 1/2 pound fettuccini noodles
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (suggest doubling the butter)
  • 10-15 whole sage leaves, sliced cross-wise into very thin ribbons
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oven to 450°F. Peel the squash, scrape out the seeds, and cut it into 1/2-inch cubes. Toss the cubes with a little olive oil and salt, and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast for 45-60 minutes, stirring the cubes every 15 minutes, until they are tender and beginning to show caramelized brown spots. Remove from the oven and set aside. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta with a generous amount of salt for 7-9 minutes, or according to package instructions. Scoop out 1/2 cup of pasta cooking liquid before draining, then drain the pasta and set aside. While the pasta is cooking, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Swirl the pan occasionally and cook until the butter has turned caramel-brown and smells nutty, about 5 minutes. Add the sage leaves to the browned butter and let them fry for a few seconds until crispy. Add the roasted butternut squash, nutmeg, and a half teaspoon of salt to the pan and stir until the squash is evenly coated with butter. Pour in 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta liquid and let this bubble into a thin sauce. Taste and add more salt if needed. Add the cooked pasta, tossing to coat and mix evenly. Remove from heat. Transfer the pasta into a large serving bowl or individual pasta bowls. Top with the pine nuts and a generous shaving of parmesan cheese.

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