Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Butternut Squash Ravioli with Four-Herb Tomato Sauce

About a week ago, while putting together this week's menu, I started clicking around the recipe posts on the newly launched Chow. One that caught my eye immediately was this one for autumn squash ravioli with sage brown butter sauce. Seemed like a nice mid-week dinner that wouldn't take too much effort to throw together. By the time we got done with it, though, we'd turned it a little bit on its head, for the better I think.

The squash I stuck to pretty much as written. This morning I roasted two halves of the butternut squash in the oven and mashed the cooked insides together with vanilla and nutmeg. Then I let it sit all day.

By the time I get home, Jennifer and I had already decided to open a bottle of Francis Ford Coppola's claret with tonight's dinner. So, I figured the whole dish would be better with a red sauce. We had one box of plain tomato sauce and a few packages of fresh herbs: parsley, sage, rosemary, and oregano.

I started with half a red onion and two cloves of garlic. Those sautéed over medium heat while I added the fresh herbs. Then, the tomato sauce got dumped in, along with some chopped mushrooms, for texture. We simmered the sauce for maybe thirty or forty minutes, to let the flavors really mix together. By the time it was ready, Jennifer said she could smell it out in the hallway.

The ravioli was a cinch to put together, mostly because we used wonton wrappers. We tried a few different shapes, just to get a feel for what we'd serve in different contexts. For a dinner, I'd definitely stick with big squares. But for a cocktail party, we made some little rectangles that would work very well. We poured a little bit of sauce over it to serve and paired the whole dish with some of the leftover kale and cabbage.

In the end, the sweetness of the ravioli matched the herby sauce amazingly well. And the claret played expertly off the peppery sauce. This was easily my best meal this week.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home