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!

Published by

janescucinaitaliana

Jane Biscarini From Rancho Santa Fe, CA to Rome, Italy to Chattanooga, TN I grew up in the San Diego area, down the street from the now famous Chinos Vegetable Market. We purchased our organic (wasn’t even a term then) veggies there. Their sweet white corn was a summer staple on our table. 20 years later Wolfgang Puck discovered them for his restaurants in Los Angeles and made them famous. Cooking fresh and delicious meals was always a part of my family life. My sisters and I all cooked. Then in my 20’s I discovered Italy- and my future Italian husband (from Milan). We originally moved to Italy to expose the kids (now Marco 22 and Isabella16 years old) to the Italian culture and language. Well, 10 years into it, we lived in Como, Florence ,Rome and my new favorite Puglia (the next Tuscany). At different intervals we have lived a total of a year with my Italian sister and mother in law, learning and integrating their cooking secrets from Lombardia, Liguria, and Piemonte. Our last year was spent in Puglia – Manfredonia to be exact- (not Macedonia although we kept slipping the tongue and saying that for months) a charming seaside town that is a new favorite and a foodie indulgence! I Completed a professional chef course for Italian cuisine in Terni (Umbria region) 2012. I taught Italian cooking classes for 3 years in Rome- to other foreigners, American embassy staff and secret service. For our work in Rome I prepared at least 2 lunches/dinners a week for Italians and this is what they say in their words: I have tasted many times the dishes prepared by Jane and I can say only this thing: “I’didn’t know that an American lady – I’m an Italian family – part time cook - could make so many tipbits of Italian, American, Mexican cooking, and the dishes are so good that I had to change my opinion about the quality of American food, and about the way used to combine various ingredients to obtain excellent results. Jane deserves a lot of congratulations for her work , for her commitment and for her passion!” Unforgettable her pumpkin soup and her New York cheese-cake, but also “amatriciana pasta” and “lasagna”! I never thought that an American pretty lady could teach me so much! Patrizia- Roma Hi, my name is Laura, I am italian and I live in Rome where I had known Jane since 3 years ago , so I have had the opportunity to go to her nice house many times and to appreciate her as hostess and good cook. Jane is able to cook perfectly every type of food, American, Mexican, Oriental but, above all, she is able to cook… Italian food better than an Italian!!!! It’s not easy to pass the exam of the “verdict” of Italians about different kinds of pasta, pizza, melanzane alla parmigiana, gnocchi and so on, but she is a great cook and she knows how to propose them in the best way as well. And in several occasions it happened that we – her Italian friends – asked her to give us the correct recipes! So I think you are lucky to have Jane as your cooking teacher, I am sure she ‘ll become one of your good friends too, and you’ll enjoy her cooking lessons! Laura Garassini Ho avuto modo di gustare la cucina di Jane, debbo dire che oltre ad essere meravigliosamente presentata i gusti non sono buoni, ma FANTASTICI!! Silvano Ferraro Translation: I had the chance to taste Jane’s cooking. I must say that on top of serving beautifully prepared dishes, their tastes are not good but fantastic! Per mia fortuna ho mangiato diverse volte cibo cucinato da Jane! E’ una esperienza sempre interessante per il palato e per la propria cultura gastronomica: Jane riesce, con poco e con grazia, a creare sapori perfetti che conducono in un viaggio sensoriale dalla tradizione italiana all’esperienza esotica… dove la certezza del buono si accompagna alla scoperta di nuovi gusti! Rosalba Translation: In my good fortune I have eaten Jane’s cooking various times. It is always an experience interesting for the palate and for the true cultural gastronomy. Jane can, with little and with grace, create the perfect flavors that conduct a voyage of the senses from the traditional Italian to the exotic experience…where the certainty of goodness is accompanied by the discovery of new flavors! Cara jane, ormai cucini così bene che meriteresti la cittadinanza italiana onoraria!!! Baci Gianluca Ievolella Translation: Now you cook so well that you deserve the honorary Italian citizenship!

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