Squash & rosemary tagliatelle with crème fraîche & nutmeg recipe image

Print Squash & rosemary tagliatelle with crème fraîche & nutmeg

Squash makes a rich, sweet and comforting partner to pasta. It is most often stuffed into ravioli or tortellini but it can make a hearty sauce with very little effort. The trick is to find the right consistency; too thick and it feels like soup, too thin and it won’t coat the pasta. The crème fraîche helps with the saucy feel but if you want to forego any dairy then a few spoons of olive oil will work instead.

Ingredients

  • 1 onion
  • Olive oil
  • 10g rosemary
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 2 tbsp crème fraîche
  • 1 nutmeg
  • 250g tagliatelle pasta
  • 50g Italian-style cheese
  • Salt & pepper

Method

  1. Put a large pan of well salted water on to boil. Peel and very finely dice the onion. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a saucepan and gently fry the onions for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until starting to soften.
  2. While the onion cooks, strip the leaves from one large rosemary stalk and finely chop them. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Peel the butternut, remove the soft seedy core with a spoon and coarsely grate 400g of the flesh, saving the rest for another day.
  3. Add the rosemary and garlic to the onions and cook for 1 minute or so before adding the grated squash. Fry gently for 2 minutes before tipping in 300ml of water. Simmer gently for 15 minutes until the squash is tender.
  4. When the squash is just tender add in the crème fraîche. Stir to incorporate and season with salt, pepper and a generous grating of nutmeg to your taste. Drop the tagliatelle into the boiling water, stir to divide the strands and boil for 5 minutes.
  5. At this point you can leave the sauce as it is or blend it into a smooth silky sauce with a stick blender or liquidizer. You want the texture to be just thicker than double cream. Thin it with a dash of pasta water if it’s too thick.
  6. Drain the pasta, return to the pan and mix with a little olive oil. Add in the sauce and mix well. Divide between 2 bowls and top with the grated cheese. Finish with a few turns of black pepper and some finely chopped fresh rosemary.

Cooks notes

By grating the squash we are creating a larger surface area and therefore speeding up the cooking process. This trick is also a great way to start a risotto before adding the rice.
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