Harvest time is right around the corner, and stores will feature those symbols of the fall season, pumpkins and squash. Pumpkins are actually types of squash, and are a healthy seasonal favorite that can also be enjoyed in recipes year-round if you freeze or can the flesh after they ripen in the fall. Be sure to save the seeds! Here is a healthy and delicious meatless pasta dish using pumpkin that can be served as either a main course or a side dish.
1 cup roasted pumpkin
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cumin
Dash of white or black pepper
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup ground cashews (or nuts of your choice)
1 1/2 cups semolina flour
1/2 cup all-purpose non-bleached flour
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp dried basil
1/2 cup water
1 tsp olive oil
Roast the Pumpkin
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Slice your pumpkin in half horizontally and scrape out all the seeds and surrounding stringiness (keep the seeds for these pumpkin seed treats!)
- Place both pumpkin halves cut-side down on a baking sheet and roast for about an hour or until the skin is very soft and brown in spots and the flesh is soft and easily separates.
- Scrape flesh away from skins and let drain in a colander.
Make the Filling
- Melt butter over medium heat in a large saucepan.
- Add nutmeg, cinnamon, cumin, pepper, salt and ground cashews.
- Stir in pumpkin and cook, stirring and mashing, until the mixture is fragrant and the consistency of stringy, creamy mashed potatoes.
- Turn off heat and set aside.
Make the Pasta
- Sift together flour, salt, and basil. Add oil and water and knead until a stiff dough forms.
- If you’re going to be cooking your ravioli the same day that you’re making them, you’ll probably want to prepare a large pot of water at this point so it’ll be ready to go when you’re done with assembly. Add a dash of salt and a dollop of olive oil to the water.
- Turn out dough on a lightly floured surface and roll it as thin as you can with a rolling pin (or, if you have a pasta maker, by all means, use it). You may want to work with a small portion of the dough at a time.
- Cut your dough into roughly matching squares – about 2.5″ works well.
- Put approximately 1 tablespoon of the pumpkin filling in the middle of a square, place another square on top, and pinch around the edges to seal. This is a great step on which to enlist the help of family and friends – it will go much quicker with more hands-on the job. Place ravioli on parchment paper to prevent sticking.
- Gently drop ravioli into a large pot of boiling water.
- Cook for 15 minutes and carefully drain.
- Serve with sauce of your choice.
- One pumpkin will yield way more than the one cup needed for this recipe, so you might want to plan on making a pie, soup, and/or other recipes that call for pumpkin. Or quadruple this recipe; ravioli freezes well. Or just drain, bag, and freeze the excess pumpkin.
- You can make the ravioli ahead of time. It keeps very well on parchment paper in containers in the fridge.
- Save and rinse the pumpkin seeds. They are easy to roast and delicious. Simply toss in oil, spread on a baking sheet, and roast at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes, stirring halfway through.