The holidays are fast approaching and bringing along all the cheer, family bonding, food, and drinks! It is a magical time that inspires people to be a better version of themselves, act selflessly, and they absorb all the good vibes surrounding them.
With multiple invitations for parties, intimate get-together, and dinner soirees; you need a dish that can be made easily and efficiently without question. Something that people will think of as comfort food but with a twist to make your dish stand out among the other entrees and appetizers that abound. Why not try something is comfort food but has that bit of pizzazz to match the festive feeling – butternut squash and roasted pecan ravioli that features homemade dough!
It is an easy vegetable to grow and an easy recipe to follow with the ingredients being fairly simple, so with a bit of time and effort, you can be bringing a festive dish that is healthy but quite tasty for the masses.
Why Butternut Squash?
It’s a hearty vegetable chocked full of vitamins and much needed nutrients. One serving has more than your daily dose of fiber. As well as potassium which is vital for the development of bones and teeth. But most importantly, it’s an excellent source of vitamin B6 which is crucial to the proper function of your immune and nervous systems.
Benefits of Making Your Pasta
Aside from the obvious health benefits such as the exclusion of chemicals and preservatives, making your own pasta has a bunch of other great benefits!
- You can use any flour you want. This covers white, whole wheat, and even gluten-free.
- You can pick any color you please! Adding food coloring or vegetable extracts such as beet or spinach, you can color your pasts and make it more fun for kids.
- The sky’s the limit for shapes. When you make your own pasta, you can opt for just about any fun shape and size you please. Want a giant ravioli? No prob. Want thicker strands of spaghetti? Sure.
- Make extra and store for later. When making the pasta, double the recipe and let the extra left over fully air dry. Then you can store it for up to a week in a container for future meals.
What You Will Need:
To master the task of making butternut squash and roast pecans ravioli, including homemade dough, make sure you have the following on hand so this project goes off without a hitch!
Prep and Cooking Times: Approximately Two (2) hours to Three (3) hours
- Large mixing bowl
- Clean kitchen towels for hands
- Rolling pin
- Mixing spoon
- Large baking sheet
- Round cookie cutter or glass
- Homemade pasta maker *if available
- Food processor*if available
Homemade Dough for Ravioli
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 pinch salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
Butternut Squash and Roasted Pecan
- 2 cups butternut squash. This can be fresh from one full-sized butternut squash, or you can do what I did and opt for a bag of frozen, pre-chopped.
- ½ a large onion
- 3-4 cloves of fresh garlic
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- A pinch of salt
- A pinch of black pepper
- 1 heaping spoon of brown sugar
- 2 ounces of fresh or grated parmesan cheese
- 1 cup of pecans
Garnishes – If Desired
- Crumbled parmesan cheese
- Fresh Basil
Homemade Dough – recipe can be used with a food processor if available but also works mixing by hand in a bowl.
Measure out one cup of all-purpose flour (white or whole wheat) and add to your food processor. If using whole wheat flour, add a quarter cup of white because whole wheat can sometimes be too sticky for this recipe.
Add a pinch or quarter teaspoon of salt to the flour and sift around until evenly mixed. This is important to do before adding any wet ingredients to ensure consistency in the texture of the dough.
Crack three regular eggs and add to the food processor along with the salt and flour.
Add 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
Place the cover on the food processor and attach to the base. Mix the ingredients on a blend or puree setting until the dough is completely mixed. Now, this is super important not to skip. Don’t just leave your dough like this. Check it. If it’s too gooey or sticky, you’ll have to add a spoonful of flour at a time until you achieve the right texture which should be similar to a pie dough; firm, not sticky, but moldable. Now, if you get to this step and your dough is too dry (crumbling when you mold it) then you should add more olive oil. Just a few drops at a time until you get that perfect result.
Take the dough and cover in plastic wrap. Set in the fridge to cool for about 30 minutes, or how long it takes you to make the filling.
Butternut Squash Filling
If using fresh squash, use a sharp blade and slide down the middle, lengthways. Scoop out the area with seeds and discard. With a paring knife, slice the flesh of the squash into small cubes and then scoop out with a large spoon. This should equal to two cups or more.
If you don’t want to bother with all of that, you can do what I did and opt for pre-peeled and chopped frozen butternut squash which works perfectly and is still super tasty! Open the bag and spread out on a baking sheet.
Peel, chop, and dice half of a large onion into small pieces and add to the squash on the baking sheet. Mix around so it’s evenly distributed.
Peel and finely chop the three cloves of garlic and do the same; add to the baking sheet of veggies you’ve got going. Mix them in evenly so the flavor reaches everywhere it can.
Drizzle and cover in olive oil. Sprinkle salt and pepper over the sheet of chopped veggies. You can use as little or as much as you want.
Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until the veggies begin to soften and brown around the edges. The softer they are, the better they’ll blend in the food processor.
Remove the sheet for roasted veggies from the oven and let cool. Then add to the food processor along with two heaping spoons of brown sugar and two ounces of parmesan cheese. Attach to the base and blend/puree for a few seconds until everything is mixed together in a beautiful orange filling.
Now that you’ve got your dough and your filling, you can start making the individual ravioli. Take your ball of dough from the fridge and sprinkle your prep surface with flour. Remove the dough from the plastic and place on the flour.
With a rolling pin, coat it in flour and then roll out the dough in a thin sheet. About the thickness of fettuccine.
Using a small glass or cookie cutter (can be square or circle) and cut as many pieces of the dough as you can.
With a small teaspoon, place a scoop of the filling on one of the pieces of dough.
Take another piece of the cut dough and place over the one with the spoonful of filling. Using a fork or your fingers, pinch all along the sides to seal the filling in a pocket. Now you have your first ravioli. Repeat this step until you run out of filling and dough.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Then, one by one, place the ravioli in the boiled water. Let them boil for 2-3 minutes and then remove with a spoon to a plate and set aside.
Get a skillet or a deep pan and heat to medium. Then toss in a couple of tablespoons of butter to melt. Add chopped pecans and let them roast for about 5 minutes.
Add the freshly cooked ravioli and let them brown. 2-3 minutes per side, maximum. Any more than that, your dough will become too tough.
And you’re done! Plate your dish and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and fresh basil for taste!
That quick, we have just conquered the easiest way to make a tasty and filling dish of butternut squash with roasted pecans along with homemade dough. This dish is sure to delight and wow at any holiday function with its bright colors and satisfying texture. Just make sure to have a warming plate or access to an oven if you are bringing this to another person’s home and always warm food on a low temperature for scant minutes at a time to avoid overcooking or drying out the dish. So, hit up your local grocery store or food surplus store, take over the kitchen and be prepared to be asked – just how do you make this? Want more awesome and super easy dishes like this? Or do you have some ideas of your own you’d like to share? Comment below!