Last week, I hosted a very small dinner party at my apartment. My cousin is back from her stint in the Peace Corps (Costa Rica), and my sisters and I are trying to spend as much time with her as we can before she leaves New York again for a job in D.C. The four of us met after work for a cozy fall meal, the exact one we’re sharing below. Close your eyes and imagine what the season of fall would taste like. That is what this pasta dish ended up being!
Recipe below from Daniela:
Pre-cubed Butternut Squash (Whole Foods’ comes with a brown sugar butter – highly recommend)
1 bunch Broccoli Rabe, cut into thirds with stems removed
1 box Orecchiette Pasta (the one that looks like hats!)
Toasted Green Pumpkin Seeds
Grated Cheese and Red Pepper Flakes to Taste
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the b.squash with olive oil and salt (or the brown sugar butter) and place in a single layer on a sheet tray. Bake in the oven until soft, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and put aside.
(This was the hard part for me) Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Set up a bowl of well-salted ice water. Drop the broccoli rabe into the pot of boiling water, swirl it around, remove it from the water and immediately plunge into the salty ice water. SAVE THE BOILING WATER FOR THE PASTA! Remove the broccoli rabe from the ice water, squeeze out the excess water and set aside.
Sauté the pancetta with olive oil and red pepper flakes until brown and crispy. Add the roasted pumpkin seeds and broccoli rabe to the mix, along with 3/4 cup of the boiled broccoli rabe water.
At the same time, cook the pasta (follow box instructions). When it’s done, combine the pasta with the sautéed medly. Add cheese and red pepper flakes at will.