This little guy has been waiting in the wings for a long time.
Or rather, he's been sitting in my fridge since November. At that point in time, the weather was much warmer and I was happily farmer's-marketing every weekend. I found my acorn squash at the Bigg Riggs booth at the Old Town Alexandria Farmer's Market and was so smitten with him that I proceeded to take him home for a little photo shoot in my neighborhood.
I had to be very inconspicuous while photographing him, given how nosy neighbors can be. I didn't want anyone thinking I was a little looney and all, you know, taking photos of a squash and a couple of pumpkins. Upon exiting the garden apartment, I safely concealed him in a hip-looking bag and wandered off to a quiet spot which seemed free of curious dog-walkers and stray afternoon strollers.
I don't think anyone saw me.
So, that was me, two months ago. Smitten and in-love as I could be with my acorn squash. That is, until he landed a spot in my crowded fridge.
But, he's been a good sport through all the rejection. He's held up well, and was perfectly fit and prepared to be the object of my affection again. You see, that's the wonderful thing about winter fruits and vegetables. They have an amazing shelf life.
I decided to feature him in acorn squash ravioli. He would be the main star of the dish, slowly roasted before being pureed with a mixture of onions, garlic, sage, ricotta, and parmesan cheese. Then, he would be wrapped in wonton wrappers, boiled quickly, and covered in a sauce of browned butter and fresh sage.
Isn't that worth waiting for?
With no further ado, here is the recipe.
Acorn Squash Ravioli with Sage Butter View Print Friendly Version
Serves 4 (Main Course) or 6 (Appetizer)
- 1 acorn squash, diced and roasted*
- 1/4 Cup yellow onion, diced
- 2 TB fresh sage, choped
- 1 TB butter
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/4 Cup Ricotta Cheese
- 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp sherry vinegar
- dash of red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper
- 1 package of wonton wrappers
- semolina flour or cornmeal (for dusting)
- small bowl of water (for preparing the ravioli)
- 4 TB butter
- 2 tsp fresh sage (+ more to taste)
- walnut oil (optional)
Pre-heat the oven to 350 F. To get maximum flavor from the squash, peel the rind and dice into small cubes. Place the cubes on a foil or parchment lined baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for 30-45 minutes until all sides are nicely caramelized. *Note: If you don't have the time (or patience) to peel the squash and cube it, you can alternatively follow this procedure: halve the squash. Place each half cut-side down on an oiled parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 30-45 minutes.
In the meantime, warm 1 TB butter in a medium sauce pan. Saute the onions and 2 TB chopped sage until the onions are transparent. Add garlic, salt, and pepper. Saute for one minute longer, then set aside.
When the squash is finished roasting, combine the squash, onion mixture, ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, nutmeg, sherry vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a food processor. Pulse until the texture is creamy. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Assemble the Ravioli
Lightly cover a piece of parchment paper with semolina flour or cornmeal (this will prevent the ravioli from sticking). Have ready: a stack of wonton wrappers, a small bowl of water, a brush, additional semolina flour or cornmeal.
Place 1-2 tsp of squash filling in the center of the wonton wrapper.
Brush the outside edges of the wonton wrapper with water.
Fold the two outer points of the wonton wrapper together to make the wonton into a triangle.
If necessary, fold over any extra dough on the outside to make a neater shape.
Repeat this process until all of the squash filling has been used. This recipe should make between 30-40 raviolis.
Place the raviolis in a large pot of simmering water for 3-5 minutes. Due to the delicate nature of wonton wrappers, you may want to test one ravioli before cooking all of them. Serve with sage butter sauce, or your sauce of choice. If you'd like to make these ahead of time, they can be frozen in an air-tight ziplock bag, and then prepared at a later time.
Make the Sage Butter Sauce
Heat 4 TB butter in a sauce pan over medium heat until it begins to brown. Add 2 tsp of freshly chopped sage, salt, pepper, and a dash of walnut oil (optional). Serve atop acorn squash ravioli immediately.
I hope you enjoy this recipe, and please let me know if you try it.
As for myself, I will be taking a long weekend away from cooking in order to celebrate John's birthday. We are off to New Orleans. And look- he received the perfect present to prepare himself for impromptu jam sessions in the French Quarter.
If only he knew more than the three glorious "power" chords from the instructional DVD that came with the guitar.
Ah well, we'll have a good time anyway.