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Butternut Squash Fresh Pasta Dough – Easy! spinach, beets, zucchini, herbs, garlic can be substited!

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butternut squash pasta
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cutting with hand roller
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dough after kneading 8 minutes
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after rolling through on 1st setting
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cooked butternut squash

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So I discovered an easy way to peel and prep the butternut squash. The microwave!
Just poke holes in it about 10 times and nuke it for about 5 minutes until it’s soft enough to cut in half. It’s so easy to peel too! No more sore muscles!
Then throw it in the food processor with the flour, add water as needed and echola! you have your dough.
Knead for 8 minutes until soft and silky.
Let rest wrapped in plastic wrap for 30 minutes and up to 2 hours- freeze it if you will be longer. Dough doesn’t like refrigeration as it takes in too much extra moisture.

Ingredients:
2 cups semolina flour
1/3 cup cooked butternut squash
3-5 oz warm water

method:
poke holes in squash all around then microwave for 5-8 minutes until fork pierces easily.
cut in half and peel.
Take 1/3 of it and put in food processor – use the rest for dinner, drizzling some maple syrup and butter, sprinkling of sea salt and broil until all bubbly and carmelized- delish!
Process the squash until smooth.
Add 2 cups semolina and process until well combined.
pour the water through the feed tube slowly until mixture forms a ball by itself.
Remove to a semolina floured counter and knead for 8 minutes- put music on and knead to the beat! Have fun with it! Kids love to do this too and you really can’t ruin it.

Wrap in plastic and let rest for half an hour up to 2 hours.
Take 1/4 of dough out- rewrap the rest so it doesn’t dry out.
Roll it out by hand as thin as possible or use a pasta machine starting with 1 and progressing to 6.

You can leave in wide pieces for lasagna or cut into strips for fettucine (pictured above) The world is your oyster- do whatever you want!
Then let air dry hanging on hangers, chairs, whatever you have for a day – The artisan pasta companies dry for 3 days, moving from hot and dry location to a cool and humid place, and back to hot/ dry. This forms a crust on the outside while completely drying on inside.
Purpose: to have a great end result when cooked that doesn’t fall apart and cooks to al dente.
Store in zip locked bags once dry in your pantry or instead of drying put immediately in freezer – this method saves you from having pasta and four all over your house like I do right now.

You can substitute spinach, beets, herbs and garlic for the squash.

When cooking pasta from freezer don’t thaw out first-
make sure boiling water is well salted- should taste like the ocean (remember there is no salt in the dough- for many reasons)
frozen will cook in about 5 minutes
from dried will cook in about 2-3
from fresh 1-2 minutes depending on the thickness. Just take a strand out and taste it every 30 seconds and if there is a firm bite to it without being raw it’s done!

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