Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagna
FOR THE FILLING
- 2 large butternut squashes (about 2 pounds each), halved lengthwise and seeded
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 2 1/4 cups finely grated Parmesan cheese (about 8 ounces), plus more if needed
- 1/2 cup finely crushed amaretti cookies, plus more if needed
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh sage, plus more if needed
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus more if needed
FOR THE BECHAMEL
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 6 cups whole milk
- Coarse salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- FOR ASSEMBLY
- Homemade Pasta for Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagna
Make the filling: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Drizzle squash halves with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast squashes, cut sides down, on a rimmed baking sheet until tender and browned, about 1 hour. Let cool. Scoop flesh from skins, and puree in a food processor until smooth.
Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Continue to cook until browned and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
Combine 3 cups squash puree, 1 cup Parmesan, 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons amaretti cookies, sage, browned butter, 1 teaspoon salt, and nutmeg in a bowl. Adjust seasoning as desired with more Parmesan, amaretti cookies, sage, salt, and nutmeg.
Make the bechamel: Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour. Reduce heat to low, and cook, whisking often, for 3 minutes (do not let flour brown).
Meanwhile, bring milk to a gentle simmer in another small saucepan over low heat. Gradually whisk hot milk into the roux, whisking constantly to prevent lumps from forming. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and the nutmeg. Raise heat to medium, and bring to a boil, whisking constantly. Cook, whisking, until thickened, about 10 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and cook until the raw flour taste is gone, 5 to 10 minutes more. Season with 3/4 teaspoon salt.
Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees. Assemble the lasagna: Coat bottom and sides of a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with a thin layer of bechamel (about 1/2 cup). Arrange two 8-by-21-inch sheets cooked pasta on top, barely overlapping, to cover bottom and sides of dish. (Edges of pasta should hang over sides by about 2 inches.)
Top with 3/4 cup squash filling, and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon amaretti cookies. Top with 1 sheet of pasta (fill in any gaps with pieces of another sheet if needed), trimming edges as needed so that pasta fits neatly in dish.
Top pasta with 3/4 cup bechamel and 2 tablespoons Parmesan. Continue layering in same order (pasta, squash and amaretti, pasta, bechamel and Parmesan) until you reach the top of the dish, ending with 1 sheet of pasta (you may need to fill in gaps with pieces of another sheet; you should have 10 layers of pasta). Fold in the overhang from the first layer of pasta to create a package. Trim pasta sheets as needed to prevent too much overlap, then spread remaining bechamel over top.
Bake, covered with parchment-lined foil, for 20 minutes. Uncover, and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan. Bake until top is browned, about 35 minutes more. Let cool slightly before serving.
Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 celery rib, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
- 1 carrot, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped (6 to 8 cups), seeds discarded (see How to Peel and Cut a Butternut Squash)
- 1 tart apple, peeled, cored, chopped (squash and apple ratio should be 3:1)
- 3 cups chicken stock or broth (use vegetable broth if cooking vegetarian)
- 1 cup water
- Pinches of nutmeg, cinnamon, cayenne, salt and pepper
1 Sauté onion, carrot, celery in butter: Heat a large thick-bottomed pot on medium-high heat. Melt the butter in the pot and let it foam up and recede. Add the onion, carrot, and celery and sauté for 5 minutes. Lower the heat if the vegetables begin to brown.
2 Add squash, apple, broth, water, then simmer: Add the butternut squash, apple, broth and water. Bring to boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes or so, until the squash and carrots have softened.
3 Purée the soup: Use an immersion blender to purée the soup, or work in batches and purée the soup in a standing blender.
4 Season with nutmeg, cinnamon, cayenne, salt, pepper: Add pinches of nutmeg, cinnamon, and cayenne. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Garnish with chopped fresh parsley or chives.
Caramelized Butternut Squash
- 2 medium butternut squash (4 to 5 pounds total)
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut off and discard the ends of each butternut squash. Peel the squash, cut them in half lengthwise, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into 1 1/4 to 1 1/2-inch cubes and place them on a baking sheet. Add the melted butter, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. With clean hands, toss all the ingredients together and spread in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 45 to 55 minutes, until the squash is tender and the glaze begins to caramelize. While roasting, turn the squash a few times with a spatula, to be sure it browns evenly. Taste for seasonings and serve hot.
Penne with Butternut Squash and Goat Cheese
- Vegetable oil cooking spray
- 1 (2-pound) butternut or kabocha squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
- 1 onion, diced into 1/2-inch pieces
- Olive oil, for drizzling
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound penne pasta
- 1 cup (8 ounces) goat cheese, crumbled
- 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted (see Cook’s Note)
- 1 packed cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- 1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan
Put an oven rack in the upper third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Spray a baking sheet, liberally, with vegetable oil cooking spray. Set aside.
Mix the squash and onion together and arrange in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bake for to 40 to 45 minutes until the vegetables are golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
While the squash mixture is cooling, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain and reserve about 2 cups of the pasta water. Put the pasta, goat cheese and 1 cup of pasta water in a large serving bowl. Toss until the cheese has melted and forms a creamy sauce. Add the squash and onion mixture, the walnuts and the basil. Toss well and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Garnish with Parmesan and serve.
Roasted Butternut Squash and Sage
- One 3-pound butternut squash-peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch dice
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 12 sage leaves Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 425°. In a large bowl, toss the butternut squash with the olive oil and sage and season with salt and pepper. Spread the squash on a baking sheet in a single layer and roast in the oven for about 40 minutes, until tender and lightly browned, tossing once half-way through. Transfer to a bowl and serve.