Butternut Squash with Mushrooms and Ziti

Photo: Randy Graham, Valley Vegetarian

I’ve posted recipes with butternut squash and other recipes with cremini mushrooms. I have not thought, until now, to combine the two. Many thanks to the Vegetarian Times magazine for the inspiration for this adapted recipe.

Here is a truly unique way to enjoy butternut squash and cremini mushrooms together. Add a good quality Gruyère cheese a little truffle oil and this is a combination not to be missed. Think “paradise of flavors” as my friend Manny would say.

3 sprigs fresh sage plus 2 tablespoons fresh sage (chopped)
12 ounces mushrooms (cut into quarters)
3 small leeks – white and light green parts only (slice ½-inch thick)
12 ounces broccoli (florets only)
12 ounces ziti pasta (uncooked)
4 tablespoons butter
¼ cup flour
1 32-ounce package butternut squash soup
2 cups Gruyère cheese (grated – divided)
1 teaspoon truffle oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup fresh ricotta cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat 10-inch springform pan with cooking spray.

Photo: Randy Graham, Valley Vegetarian

Bring large pot of salted water to a boil with fresh sage sprigs. Use this boiling water to separately blanch mushrooms (3 minutes), leeks (2 minutes) and broccoli (1 minute). Immediately transfer each vegetable to colander with slotted spoon, rinse under cold water, drain well, and set aside. Retain boiling water.

Using the retained water above, boil ziti for 6 minutes (not according to package directions). Drain, rinse under cold water, and set aside. You can toss out the boiling water at this point.

Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour, and cook 3 to 5 minutes, or until beginning to turn light brown, stirring constantly. Add butternut squash soup and stir until combined with the roux. Cook for 5 minutes more. Stir in 1 cup of the Gruyère cheese, all of the chopped sage and the truffle oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir soup mixture into pasta, add blanched vegetables and stir to combine.

Spread one-third of pasta mixture in the springform pan and dot with 1/3 cup ricotta cheese. Repeat twice with remaining pasta mixture and ricotta, and then sprinkle with remaining 1 cup Gruyère cheese.

Place springform pan on large baking sheet and bake 30 minutes, or until top is browned and cheese is melted. Let stand 5 minutes before unmolding and serving.

Photo: Randy Graham, Valley Vegetarian

Serve with a fresh salad and bottle of Old Creek Ranch Winery 2010 Sangiovese (White Hawk Vineyard Santa Barbara County) for a complete and satisfying meal.

About Valley Vegetarian

The fresh chef providing consistently good vegetarian comfort food recipes.
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2 Responses to Butternut Squash with Mushrooms and Ziti

  1. Laura says:

    Yum! A great combination – looks delicious!


  2. Laura – Thanks. It is a different combination of flavors and still totally veggie comfort food!


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