yields 4 main course portions or 6 appetizer portions
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced fine
3 tablespoons butter
3 oz bacon, cut into 1/4″ pieces (approx. 2-3 slices of bacon)
1 3/4 lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced into 1/2″ cubes
1 cup water
salt and pepper to taste
1 lb gemelli
3 oz medium aged pecorino cheese, medium grated
Bring a large pot of water (about 6 quarts) to boil for the pasta.
the ends off the squash, cut in half, then peel, either with a peeler
or sharp paring knife. Cut in half again, lengthwise,
remove the seeds and dice.
Dice the onion and chop up the bacon.
Add the butter to a large saute pan and add the diced onion. Cook
over medium heat until golden brown. Add the bacon and cook until it
starts to crisp, about 2-3 minutes.
Add the squash and season with salt and pepper. Add the 1 cup of
water, stir to combine and cover with a lid for 8-10 minutes until the
squash is soft. Check after 5 minutes and make sure all the water has
not cooked away. If it has, and the squash is still hard, add more water
in 1/4 cup increments until the squash is soft enough to mash with the
back of a spoon.
When the water for the pasta comes to a rolling boil, add 2 tablespoons salt
and the pasta. Cook until it is al dente, and before draining,
reserve about 1/2 cup of pasta water. Drain.
Add 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta water to the sauce, smashing the
butternut squash with the back of a large spoon. If it seems too thick,
add the other 1/4 cup. Toss the sauce with the cooked pasta
and the grated cheese and serve.
bacon recipe source: Kristina Johnson, Former Chef, January 5, 2010; adapted from Thirty Minute Pasta by Giuliano Hazan