With winter around the corner. It’s time to roll out warm meals. The best part of this time of year is great comfort foods. One thing that never grows old is the fact that you can take something simple and traditional, and switch it up. One of my favorite things in the word is pasta. I would probably go mad (and drop a few pants sizes…) if I were to give up pasta. In order to use up the week’s offerings from the CSA, and make some homemade ravioli, I chose to make butternut squash ravioli. And for some extra filling, since I didn’t trust my ability to make good pasta on this occasion, I added a half a pint of husk cherries that I didn’t think I could find a home for otherwise.
Husk cherries look so beautiful, the skin on their husk looks like it’s woven, and like they are simply begging to be eaten. I just never quite know what I want to do with them. I feel like they are in that same category like the dreaded (by some) t-o-f-u worthy of disguise in most meals. I intended to do the same with these little beauties. But as it turns out – I didn’t mush them up as much as I should’ve. One happened to pop out of a ravioli and roll across my boyfriend’s plate. I suppose if you don’t know that your food contains these little buggers you might be frightened to see one roll out too. Note to self, either mash up well, or fully divulge ingredients/contents.
It’s never a good idea to let too much mascarpone cheese sit around in the fridge. It will make you impatient. It will make you want to use it up. Make tiramisu, you never know, in this case – make ravioli filling.
Butternut and Tomatillo Ravioli
fillings inspired by butternut squash gnocchi
1 medium butternut squash, cut in half, seeded (de-seeded?) baked until soft through, and peeled
1 tsp white sugar
1 small onion, diced
1/2 pint tomatillo/husk cherries, washed and chopped in half
1/3 cup mascarpone cheese
ground nutmeg, scant 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, salt, black pepper, to taste
* to make dairy free, use silken tofu instead of mascarpone cheese,
After baking the butternut squash, saute the onion in a little bit of olive oil, and toss in the husk cherries. Cook until all of the ingredients are tender, and easily mash-able. Move to a large bowl, and allow to cool. Add rest of ingredients and stir until combined.
My recipe for the pasta was awful (so it’s not being included) and I really shouldn’t go and try another pasta recipe just cause. I had a perfectly good one and I decided not to use it. I have a way of messing things up like this. Especially with pasta. I hardly ever make the same one twice and it’s a flaw I must start working on. Just because I find it while blog-hopping, does not mean that I will make it well or that it will taste better than the recipe I have already successfully used.
In general I don’t like to fill ravioli with more than two tablespoons of filling, otherwise they are too large to be considered manageable in my mind. There were several ravioli that couldn’t hold their issh together, and so did not make it onto the plate. I blame this on the pasta dough, but it definitely could’ve been human error – I was trying to do to many things and forgot to ‘watch the pot’ for a few minutes too long.
The sauce I used was just about the same as the gnocchi recipe I got inspired by. Just simple butter sauce with a little seasoning.