I decided that I had to make this at home because I never get to order it out any more. When I was working, my boss used to take us out to Milestones for work lunches once in a while, and I would always order the butternut squash ravioli.
The problem with not working is that Bo hates Milestones, so I never get to go there and order it. Boooo.
A couple of weeks ago we were in a crunch for dinner (the day just got completely away from us), and we ran into East Side Marios. They had a promo going and it included, yep, you guessed it, butternut squash ravioli. It pushed me over the edge and I was determined to figure out how to make it so that I could enjoy it at home whenever I wanted.
First off, I’ll say that I have absolutely nailed this recipe. It tastes incredible, exactly like I hoped it would.
The second thing I’ll say is that it’s a major pain in the ass to make. Dear lord did I ever feel like I was in the kitchen from morning till night. I’m guessing it didn’t help that I made the empanadas on the same day. And the pasta, and the sauce, both of which could have been made a day ahead of time. These are all points that you should really keep in mind if you make this. And you really should make this, it’s SO good, and a showstopper. I actually made my Mom come over for dinner the next night because I had so much left over. She’ll tell you, it’s ridiculously good.
Any way, what I’m trying to say is that this is totally worth all the effort. Once a year or so. It’s not something to make on a week night, but it is something to make on a special occasion, or when you want to show off a little bit.
I’m pretty slim on pictures again…company, what can I say. Well, company and a shopping trip (thanks again Jen!). I have priorities you know.
First up, make the squash puree. Split a butternut squash down the middle and scrape out the seeds. Lightly drizzle with olive oil and kosher salt, then roast at 400 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the size of the squash. It’s done when the top has started to brown and a knife slides easily through the soft squash. I don’t have a picture of the roasted squash, but once it’s finished and slightly cooled peel the skin off using your hands, and lightly beat the squash until it’s nice and smooth, then set aside.
Put the butter in the pan and cook until just starting to brown. Add in the shallots (not pictured, sorry again), and cook until softened, about a minute.
Add the squash and cook until starting to dry, 2 to 3 minutes.
Here’s the dry squash.
Add salt, pepper and heavy cream and cook for two minutes.
Turn off the heat and add the parmesan cheese.
There, done! Warning: that was the easy part
Roll out your pasta. The pros say (according to google, lol) that you can tell great ravioli dough by it’s thinness. If you can see through it, it’s good to go. So, you’re rolling this out to the smallest setting on your pasta roller. And if you don’t have a pasta roller, honestly, don’t make ravioli at home. I can’t even begin to imagine how sore my arms would be rolling out all this dough by hand. If you can though: brava!
Throw your squash filling in a pastry bag, or a zip lock bag with the corner cut off like I did. Pipe about a tablespoon of filling down the center of the dough, a couple of inches apart.
Doesn’t this just look like a ton of work great!
Now, brush some beaten egg around the edges of the pasta dough, and between all of the piped filling.
Fold the bottom of the dough over the filling then use your fingers to gently press the air out from around the filling. This is really important because if you don’t get at least the majority of the air out, the pasta will burst open when it’s boiling. Trust me, nothing is sadder then seeing a boiling pot of orange water. Trust me. Then just use a round cookie cutter to cut your ravioli out. After some practice, I found that it was easiest to do one at a time: press the air out, cut, move to the next ravioli.
After you’ve cut it out, press the edges together really well to make sure there are no leaks.
Throw the pasta in some boiling water and take it out with a slotted spoon when it floats. That’s how you know it’s done. Here’s the cooked ravioli.
Brown some butter in a skillet.
Throw in the cooked ravioli and just lightly fry in the brown butter sauce.
Now for the plating: Put the pasta on a plate, then top with a row of the chunky roma tomato sauce, some toasted sugar spiced pecans, chevere goat cheese and basil. I don’t have any pictures of the nuts, but simply put some pecan pieces in a pan with a sprinkling of white sugar and some cinnamon. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the nuts are fragrant and toasted, about 3 minutes. Don’t leave any of this out (unless you have a nut allergy or something). It’s the combination of everything that really makes this dish, the way the creaminess of the goat cheese compliments the filling, and the sweet spice of the nuts pulls out the nutmeg in the squash and contrasts the softness of everything else.
It really is so, SO great. Probably the best tasting meal that I make, it’s just a lot of work. Give it a shot at least once though!
Here’s the printable:
- 3 tbsp butter
- ½ cup minced shallots
- 3 cups butternut squash puree (1 large squash)
- ½ cup + 1 tbsp heavy cream
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ tsp nutmeg
Additional Recipes Needed
- 2 tbsp butter
- chevre cheese for garnish
- toasted pecans for garnish
- fresh basil for garnish
- Make the butternut squash puree. Split the squash down the middle and scrape out the seeds. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and roast at 400ºF for 45 minutes to one hour. Remove the skin from the roasted squash and beat until smooth.
- Melt the butter in a large saucepan until just starting to brown. Add the shallots and cook for one minute, until starting to soften.
- Add the squash puree and cook until dry, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the cream and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Roll the pasta dough out as thin as possible, until you can see through it, into long strips. Use a pastry bag, or zip lock bag with the corner cut out, to pipe the filling. Put 1 tablespoon of filling in the center of the dough, and space them a couple of inches apart in a line.
- Brush a beaten egg on all edges of the pasta dough, and in-between each of the filling mounds. Fold the pasta strip in half, from bottom to top, so that the filling now sits at the bottom. Use your fingers to press as much air as possible out from between ravioli so that they won't burst open while cooking. Use a round cookie cutter to cut the ravioli. Press the edges together well to ensure the ravioli are sealed.
- Cook the ravioli in batches until they boil.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a frying pan until browned. Add the cooked ravioli and lightly pan fry, then place on a plate. Top with roma tomato sauce, toasted pecans, crumbled chevre goat cheese and freshly mined basil.