Saturday, October 29, 2011

October Unprocessed: Tortellini with Butternut Squash and Mushrooms

Real Simple.  Love this magazine.  I don't actually buy it myself because I wait for it to show up in the staff room at my work.  I may be looking at it one month late, but whatever.  I am getting the same money saving tips, decorating ideas, and fresh recipes as the rest of you. 

Last month I changed my tune and actually purchased the magazine.  Why?  Because it had twenty fresh and easy dinners -- one month of easy and healthy meals.  WIN!  Knowing that the October Unprocessed challenge was coming (this was in September), I shelled out the 5 bucks for the magazine.

Yes, I think about spending five bucks.  I am cheap like that.

Anyway, the point is that I finally tried some of the recipes this week.  Two, actually, and I am planning on another one tomorrow.  I thought I would be all over this magazine for the month, but mostly I have been cooking things I already know how to make, but learning how to make it all unprocessed -- like tacos with my homemade tortillas or soup with with made from scratch vegetable stock.  And I have been baking, a lot.  But finally, a new recipe! 

It was worth the wait.

Before we go on, two things:
  1. If you want to smell something good, go cut some sage with your kitchen shears.  WOW.  I have never actually smelled fresh sage before.  WOW again.
  2. When I googled "how to chop butternut squash" the link I found said, "Once you figure out how easy it is to cut up butternut squash you will want to use this versatile vegetable again and again."  Um, once I figure out how easy it is?  If easy means a stabbed finger, a bruised toe, and butternut squash all over my kitchen, then sure... EASY.  (I think I need to read the directions again.)

I had never heard of Fontina cheese before.  I am a simple girl, really. I know my cheddar, jack, and colby.  Now I have added to my cheese vocabulary.

The tortellini you see below is not homemade.  However, I found one that was preservative free (hip hip horray for Trader Joe's!) and with all ingredients I own, meaning it fits the qualifications for the October Unprocessed challenge. 

(Out of curiosity, I checked out the "fresh" tortellini being sold at my local Lucky, under a brand name we all know.  LOADED with things I do not have in my kitchen nor can I pronounce.  And more expensive, too.)

In true Real Simple fashion, this took about 10 minutes of my time, 35 minutes from start to finish. 

  • 1 small butternut squash (2 pounds), peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes

  • 1/2 pound button or cremini mushrooms, stems trimmed and halved if large

  • 1/4 cup fresh sage leaves

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • kosher salt and black pepper

  • 1 pound fresh cheese tortellini (2 packs if from Trader Joe's)

  • 2 ounces fontina or Gruyère, grated (1/2 cup), plus more for serving



    1. Heat oven to 450° F. On 2 rimmed baking sheets, toss the squash and mushrooms with the sage, oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Roast, tossing once and rotating pans halfway through, until the vegetables are tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
    2. Meanwhile, cook the tortellini according to the package directions. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking water; drain the tortellini and return to the pot. Add the vegetables, fontina, ¼ cup of the cooking water, and ½ teaspoon salt and toss gently to coat (add more cooking water if the pasta seems dry). Sprinkle with additional fontina.

    COST: $10.48               PER SERVING (4): $2.75



    1. Yum! Butternut squash is one of my favorite squashes, I hadn't thought about combining them with mushrooms, but now I must test it out. Looks delicious!

    2. Wow this is really amazing! I love it! I have to say - I agree! You have to wrestle a butternut squash to get it the way you want it, but it's worth it...I almost cut my finger off once! OW!

    3. it looks really good! and I love that it doesn't take much time to make


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