Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Last of the Pumpkin

So I had some left-over pumpkin puree and instead of making it into gourmet dog food (literally, Macy LOVES pumpkin mixed with her dry food!) I trolled around food blogs and found this recipe off The Savory Notebook. I'm not a huge Rachael Ray fan, but the dish was surprisingly delicious, unlike some of her other recipes I've tried in the past. I actually turned this recipe into a vegetarian meal and made it with tofu italian sausage & used vegetable stock but changed nothing else.

Pumpkin Pasta with Sausage and Wild Mushrooms
Source: Rachael Ray 365: No Repeats

2 Tbsp EVOO
1 lb bulk sweet Italian sausage
1/4-1/2 lb shiitake mushroom caps, sliced
2 portobello mushrooms, sliced (or use about 5oz white button)
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup chicken stock or broth
1 14-ounce can pumpkin puree (or 2 cups of butternut squash puree)
1/2 cup heavy cream
pinch of ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, ground or freshly grated
1 pound penne rigate, cooked to al dente
Romano or Parmigiano, for grating
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives (optional)

Heat a large, deep nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and brown the sausage in it. Transfer sausage to paper towel lined plate. Drain fat from skillet and return pan to the stove. Add the remaining tablespoon oil, and then the garlic, onions and mushrooms. Saute 3 to 5 minutes until the onions are tender and mushrooms are browned. Season with salt and pepper. Deglaze the pan with the wine. Add chicken stock and heat for one minute. Stir in pumpkin and incorporate - it will be thick. Return sausage to pan, reduce heat, and stir in cream. Season the sauce with the cinnamon and nutmeg, and salt and pepper, to taste. Simmer mixture 5 to 10 minutes to thicken sauce. Return drained pasta to the pot you cooked it in. Combine sauce and pasta and toss over low heat for 1 minute. Top with cheese and chives.

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