Penne and Roasted Squash with Pumpkin Seed Pesto

by Rachael Ray Show Staff 9:00 AM, November 26, 2015

Aired November 26, 2015

Serves 4-6

1 1/2 pounds pumpkin or butternut squash, cut into 1 1/2-inch dice
Olive oil, for drizzling plus about 1/3 cup
Salt and pepper
Nutmeg, freshly grated
3 to 4 tablespoons almonds or pine nuts, toasted
1/4 cup toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
1 small red chili (such as Thai chili or pepperoncino) or 1 teaspoon chili flakes
1 tablespoon orange zest
2 cups flat-leaf parsley tops
2 cloves garlic
About 1/3 to 1/2 cup, a fat handful, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 pound penne rigate or farro penne with lines


Preheat oven to 425°F.
Place squash on a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Roast until tender and brown at edges, about 20-25 minutes, turning once.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil for pasta.
Place toasted nuts and seeds in a food processor with the chili pepper, orange zest, parsley, black pepper, salt, garlic and cheese, and pulse to finely chop. Stream in olive oil, about 1/3 cup, to form a pesto. Taste to adjust seasonings.
Salt boiling water and cook pasta to al dente. Reserve 1 cup starchy cooking water;  drain pasta and return to hot pot. Toss pasta with pesto and enough starchy water to coat; add squash and toss. Adjust seasoning and serve.