November 28, 2011
Acorn Squash and Goat Cheese Ravioli
It's going to be a very exciting week ahead:
Super-fun thing number one: Tomorrow, our good friends are coming over for dinner and, inevitably, a game or two of Catan because the men are engineers... and, inevitably, a glass or two of wine because they are those friends. But seriously, nothing beats really good friends. They are the type of friends that know how annoying you are, but still hang out with you. The type of friends that when you go to their house-warming party they don't say "Can I get you a glass of wine?" but instead: "the glasses are in that cabinet." I love that.
Super-fun thing number two: Wednesday we are going to OMSI after dark. (eeeeeeeep!) If you read the description of OMSI after dark on the website, it actually says "It's geeks gone wild!" My husband and I are going, so it must be true. Not only do we get to go to Body Worlds (yup, its a bunch of insides of dead people), and roam around the rest of the museum, but we also get to drink beer and wine while we do it. I did mention there will be no children there, right? This geek is going to go wild.
Super-fun thing number three: My talented friend, Leah, wrote a book (oh, and she also owns and operates her own business and runs like 5 miles a day), and she is having a book signing at her shop on Friday evening complete with live music and, of course, really good espresso.
Super-fun thing number four: On Saturday, we (Lane, James, and I) are going to Zoo Lights!!! And I think we are somehow getting in for free because Lane's company is pretty awesome to its employees. (Dear pal and "follower" Jess, if you read this, all I can say is: "they had to start using battery-operated lights because of the hippo incident of '89"...perhaps I will explain this to the rest of you when I post pics from Zoo Lights, which may not happen for at least a week since I am going to be so exhausted from all this activity.)
Despite all the adventures ahead, nothing really exciting is happening today, aside from a grocery shopping (actually, I enjoy food shopping much more than would be considered normal) and a park trip. So, being the way I am, I had to make something labor-intensive and a little strange for dinner.
I was originally going to make some sort of goat cheese and acorn squash scalloped potato dish, but it sounded too much like the food we are all now sick of from eating too much of it last week. Then I stumbled upon a recipe for pasta dough from Smitten Kitchen (who else?) that sounded so easy I had to try it.
After this dish I am even more convinced that I need a pasta machine, as this device would have made the pasta about a billion times easier, but even though it was uneven, way too thick, and really ugly, man did it taste good.
I have about fifty disclaimers before you begin, but I will only annoy you with a few of the most important ones:
1. This recipe is going to make way more filling than pasta. I packed the rest of the filling into a tupperware and popped in the freezer. When I finally do something with it, I promise I will let you know. Or, you could just double the pasta recipe, or half the filling recipe- genius!
2. Yes, it does have the same topping as the last ravioli recipe I posted. So sue me! I was originally thinking a tomato sauce or even cranberry sauce (we have so much of it left over...) for the topping, but the ravioli is so flavorful that you must keep it simple.
3. Although I tell you to roast and puree the entire squash, sometime around the asterisk I may tell you to remove some of it before adding the other ingredients. Perhaps use it to thicken a soup?
4. The recipe called for all-purpose flour, and I didn't substitute whole wheat flour because the dough is put through a food processor, and then rolled out, so the resulting pasta would have been really tough if made with whole wheat.
5. It may seem like a long, complicated recipe and a lot of dishes, but it was actually quite simple. (Says the girl who does things like this.)
Acorn Squash and Goat Cheese Ravioli
For the Filling
1 acorn squash
3 tbsp olive oil, divided (preferably rosemary-garlic infused olive oil)
4 oz log goat cheese, cut into a few pieces
3/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
pinch red pepper flakes (more if you want some heat)
Pasta Recipe from Here
For the topping
about 2 tbsp olive oil
about 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
about 1 tbsp pinenuts
fresh rosemary sprigs for garnish, if desired
Cut the acorn squash in half, scoop out the seeds and stringy insides, cut off the peel, and cut each half into three slices the long way. Cover a rimmed baking sheet with olive oil (about 2 tbsp) and place squash on the pan. Roast at 425 for about 40 minutes, or until a fork can be poked easily into the squash, flipping the squash half way through.
While the squash is roasting, follow the recipe for the pasta. While it is "relaxing," continue to make the filling:
Put squash into a food processor, and process until smooth. (*I removed about 1/3 cup of the squash because I was afraid it might take over the goat cheese taste. This probably isn't necessary.) Add remaining 1 tbsp olive oil and goat cheese log, and process. Add the pepper, rosemary, nutmeg, and red pepper flakes and process until it is all well combined. Place in refrigerator until you are ready to use it.
split the pasta dough into two balls. Roll them out, one at a time, into a 10 x 10 inch square. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 2 x 2 inch squares. Place a heaping tsp of the filling onto every other square. Top the filling with an empty pasta square, and pinch the edges of the squares together. Try to get out any air bubbles that may have formed.
Bring a pot of water to a gentle boil. Add a pinch of salt. Gently place raviolis (you may need to do this is two batches) into the water. They will begin to float on the surface of the water, but leave them in a few more minutes, about 7 minutes total. Remove with a slotted spoon.
Heat about 2 tbsp olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. Add the pinenuts and allow to cook for a few minutes, but watch to make sure they don't burn. Add the vinegar, then the raviolis. Combine for a couple minutes, then plate the raviolis and eat warm. Enjoy.