One of the many things in my abstracted to do list is to read up on different kinds of pastas. I tend to choose my pasta based on visualization of the result. Half of a buttercup squash in my fridge was what inspired this one. I had been planning on making a pasta dish with this little squash all morning, and normally, I would go with lumache pasta. I’m not sure why exactly but it just always seemed appropriate. But when I found out that they were flat out of it at the store, I decided to go with gobetti. I’ve always pictured gobetti with meaty, tomato based sauce, but with its chunky curls and strips, I thought it might be interesting.
Pasta with winter squash is something I started making during our harvest CSA season when we were getting heaps of different kinds of squashes. Sweet winter squashes can be roasted or boiled and puréed, peeled, chopped and stir fried, or just roasted in halves and scraped. I wanted the roasted flavor, but didn’t want to wait all day for it to cook. So I scraped the seeds out with a spoon, cut in thin slices, arranged the slices evenly on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle some salt, and just put it the oven.
While the squash is roasting,
- Start cooking the pasta until al dente.
- While the pasta is cooking, sweat some pressed/chopped cloves of garlic in a pan with some olive oil and salt.
- Add to the pan, capers, shiitake mushrooms, chopped leeks and rosemary, and let it cook. I pour just a bit of dry white wine if I’m drinking some.
- Take out the squash, peel, chop, and add to the pan.
- Add the drained (cooled if needed) pasta to the pan, mix it all in, and add salt to taste. (I like to add some kind of chopped green, like kale or collard greens at this point, and cook it until it’s slightly softened.)
- Mix in a dash of paprika and fresh ground pepper. Top it with some rosemary and toasted walnuts.
This dish never fails me, even with a slight variation. The chewy texture of gobetti, capers, and nuts with the softness of the squash was really great. Sweet and savory starchy dishes like this one is exactly the reason why I have to make things in small portions. But then again, this is so simple to prepare that I could always have more with just a little effort. Well. There’s one upside of being lazy.