Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Maple Baked Apples and Pears

Bake this while you bake the squash for Buttercup Cavatappi. Serve warm with ice cream for dessert. Even better: refrigerate overnight and have it for breakfast with maple vanilla yogurt.

Maple Walnut Baked Apples and Pears
maple syrup

Core fruit from the blossom end, using a melon baller. Stuff with walnuts and a drizzle of maple syrup. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Buttercup Squash with Cavatappi

It's been awhile. After moving, it's taken some time to get readjusted to the new kitchen (built for Elves, not hobbitses). It is an excellent kitchen though, with a gas stove and a DISHWASHER. Sigh. Talk about a life of luxury.

This week, we had this for dinner. I baked the squash ahead of time.

Buttercup Squash with Cavatappi

1 buttercup squash, approximately 1 1/2 lbs
1 T olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 C water
pinch of sage leaves
black pepper
3 packets of condensed chicken broth (Trader Joe's)
3 - 4 C pasta cooking liquid
1 lemon, juice and zest
1 T butter
1 lb. Cavatappi
Old Amsterdam cheese, grated

Cut the squash in half, seed and place in a baking dish. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes. Since you have the oven on, make Maple Walnut Baked Apples and Pears. Let the squash cool, then scoop out the squash flesh and dice the bits that are large. You may refrigerate it and make the dish up to 4 days later.

Start heating water to cook the cavatappi.

Heat a large pot or dutch oven, and add oil. When the oil is hot, add onion and a pinch of salt and saute slowly until it is starting to caramelize. Add 1/2 C of water to deglaze the pan, then add squash. Gradually add pasta water, one cup at a time, cooking and stirring the squash to break up large chunks. Add broth, salt (if needed), pepper, lemon juice, zest and butter. Stir until the butter melts, then add pasta. Serve with grated cheese.