Pumpkin pasta with a brown butter sauce, flavoured with thyme and sage. As Autumn approached this wonderfully comforting bowl of pasta hits the spot.
Pumpkin pasta is one of my favourite ways to eat a bowl of pasta. There is something very warming about pumpkin and it works beautifully in a pasta sauce. I used to make versions for my children when they were weaning and I’d happily eat it myself, albeit with some seasoning! However the sauce we have here is more adult, pairing pumpkin with fresh herbs and a nutty butter.
You barely each the end of the Summer holiday’s without my Canadian buddy talking pumpkin. As someone who loves my garden and the Summer months, I do my best to ignore her. By September I’ve had it, Indian Summer or not! Autumn is upon us and “Fall” is her favourite time of year! I have to say the love for all things pumpkin has worn off on me over the years. Pumpkin Pie featuring frequently on the dinner table as it’s become my youngest daughter’s favourite pie. Like me she loves spice.
With this in mind we decided to create a new pumpkin recipe for the blog, although we’ve used butternut squash as it was all we could get our hands on. We also wanted to pair it with a rich brown butter, wonderfully nutty and just right for this time of year. We hope you enjoy this recipe, perfect for Autumn, or Fall if you’re Canadian!
Additional recipe suggestions:
Looking for inspiration for feeding the family mid week, then take a look at our Ultimate Guide to Family Dinners. Full of useful hints, tips and recipes.
Pumpkin Pasta with Brown Butter Sauce
- 1 small pumpkin or butternut squash - peeled and cubed into bite-sized pieces
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 150 g unsalted butter
- 300 g dried pasta
- 200 g smoked pancetta - diced
- 3 banana shallots - finely chopped
- 2-3 cloves of garlic - crushed
- 5 whole sage leaves
- grated parmesan - to serve
- Cube the butternut squash into bite-sized pieces and place in a non-stick roasting tray, season with salt and pepper, add the whole thyme sprigs and coat with olive oil. Place in a pre-heated oven at 200CFan and roast the squash for 30 minutes until softened but still with a bite. Remove the thyme springs and set aside until the sauce is made.
- In saucepan melt the butter over a medium heat and allow the butter to darken to a rich brown colour but not blacken, you don't want to burn the butter. This takes time and you should swirl the pan occasionally to ensure the butter cooks evenly. The butter will begin to foam and turn from yellow to the toasted brown colour you are looking for, it will have a nutty aroma. Take the butter off the heat and pass through a fine sieve to strain off any sediment.
- Place a large saucepan of salted boiling water on the hob and cook your pasta as per the instructions on the packet. Once cooked drain and reserve some of the cooking liquor for use in the sauce later.
- In a large pan dry fry the pancetta and once crisp set aside onto a plate before adding the brown butter to the pan. Add the diced shallot and saute in the butter over a medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the pancetta back into the pan along with the roasted squash and the crushed garlic, stir for 3 minutes then push all the ingredients to the side of the pan and place the whole sage leaves into the butter in the middle. Saute till crisp and then remove from the pan.
- Stir the cooked pasta through the sauce, along with a ladle or two of the cooking liquor to thicken the sauce and adjust the seasoning as prefered. Serve immediately with grated parmesan.