You have to start your own seasonal traditions and this is our new fall tradition. For the past few years we have headed to the beautiful Rodoni Farms Pumpkin Patch on HWY 1 just north of Santa Cruz to grab a pumpkin for an “all pumpkin” dinner.
The cute girls that sell the pumpkins at Rodoni Farms eyeball the size of your pumpkins and calculate the price as you walk up to pay. Not only do they have a way with judging size, but they know a thing or two about their produce and always advise us to buy the Jarrahdale Pumpkin, light green in color, for making any pumpkin foods. Last year we bought one that was so huge that it took about four Tupperware containers to store all of the puree. So this year we chose a smaller pumpkin, which made a huge difference in our prep and clean-up time. We were able to make the entire dish and a batch of chocolate chip pumpkin cookies with the smaller size pumpkin ($4 pumpkin) and still have leftovers for another dish and second batch of cookies.
Recipe after the jump…
Homemade Pasta: Pumpkin Tagliatelle Recipe [eds note: we’re calling it Tagliatelle because we made it fresh, it was thick, and it was coarse, all of which define a Tagliatelle as opposed to a Fettuccine]
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1/4 cup pumpkin puree:
1/2 cup 1/4” pieces of pumpkin (Green Jarrahdale Pumpkin)
1/8 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon salt
1 large egg (2 eggs, if smaller)
Boil pumpkin pieces in salted water until tender (another option is to bake as described below). Place soft pumpkins pieces in food processor and blend until smooth.
Knead flour, spices, pureed pumpkin, salt, and egg in your mixer with a dough hook (or your hands). Then squeeze the dough into a ball and set aside for 15-20 minutes in a damp towel.
Set up your pasta machine. Sprinkle semolina or all purpose flour on your working surface. Shape dough into two balls. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out into 1/4” thick pieces. Put the first piece of dough through the sheet side of your pasta maker starting on the widest setting and send the sheet through until it thins down to an 1/8” thick sheet. Then run the sheet through the cutting side and hang the sliced pasta on a rack until ready to boil.
Pumpkin & Spicy Sausage Cream Sauce Recipe
1 smaller Pumpkin (3-4 lbs), cut into 6-8 pieces for baking
Pre-heat oven to 400F. Cut pumpkin into 6-8 slices. Put 1/4-1/2” water in the bottom of a baking dish and place the pumpkin pieces in the water. Bake the pumpkin for 45 minutes to 1 hour until tender. Remove from oven, slice off the skin and place the pieces in the food processor. Puree the pumpkin.
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound mix of Mild and Spicy Italian sausage (the mix depends on your taste, we did 1/3 spicy, 2/3 Mild)
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped (can use mandolin for making thin slices)
1 bay leaf
6 sprigs sage leaves, sliced
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup pumpkin puree (Fresh or Canned)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Salt and black pepper
Grated Parmigiano (Parmesan)
Remove the sausages from their casings. In a large saucepan, cook the sausage over medium to high heat until browned. Remove the sausage and place on a paper-towel-lined plate and dump the excess fat from the pan. In the same pan, cook the sliced onions and garlic with 1 tbsp oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes until tender.
Next add the bay leaf, sage leaves, and wine, then simmer until reduced about 2-4 minutes. Add the chicken broth and pumpkin puree, stir until it boils lightly. Turn down the heat, add the sausage and stir in the cream. Add the seasonings, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper and let sauce thicken for about 15-30 minutes without the lid.
While the sauce is cooking down, boil salted water in stock pot over high heat for cooking the pasta. Once the water boils, add the pasta and let boil 6-8 minutes to desired softness. Drain pasta and return to the pot. Add the sausage pumpkin cream sauce. Mix pasta and sauce and garnish with grated parmigiano.
Serve the pasta with garlic bread and salad.
Lesley: We decided to make a pasta sauce and noodle instead of ravioli in search of a more punchy taste. Pumpkin can be a bit flavorless without spices to give it a kick. The sausage really did that for the dish and the pasta itself was an excellent addition. We agreed that this was the best dish we have made at home in weeks.
John: This pasta dish was just what we needed after a week without power. Its richness of flavor and heartiness of body was required to boost our soggy, dark spirits. I also made some cookies, but we’ll talk about that later.