Something about fall always makes me turn to comfort foods like soups, pastas and crockpot dinners. And the cooler evening temps make working over the stove and warming the house with the oven bearable, even enjoyable. This pasta dish is easy, fast, flavorful and incorporates butternut squash, one of my favorite fall ingredients.
1 butternut squash, about 1 1/2 lb halved, seeded, peeled and cut into bite-size cubes
1/2 c diced white or yellow onion
1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
3 Tbs unsalted butter
salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 lb penne or orecchiette
4-6 thick cut applewood-smoked bacon slices, chopped
1 Tbs chopped fresh sage
1/2 c grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
Preheat over to 400 degrees fahrenheit
On a rimmed baking sheet, toss together the squash, onion, bacon, sage and olive oil then spread the mixture in a single layer. Cut 1 Tbs of the butter and dot the mixture evenly. Season with salt and pepper. Roast, rotating the pan front to back about half way through cooking, until the squash and onions are golden and tender, about 45 minutes.
Bring a large pot three-fourths full of salted water to boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until al-dente, according to the package instructions. Drain, reserving one cup of the cooking water. Cover the pasta to keep it hot.
When mixture finishes cooking, add to the pasta pot, along with the remaining 2 Tbs of butter and 1/4 cup of the cooking water. If the pasta seems dry, add in additional cooking water. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a warm serving dish and sprinkle the cheese on top. Serve immediately. Serves 4-6.
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