By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the National Pasta Association and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.
So, let’s double check. Still National Pasta Month? Yes? Goooood. Am I going to post pasta every single day this month? No. I wish. This is probably my last one, at least for now 😉 If we’re keeping a tally about how much I love noodles, I think we’re probably at reason #4893 by now. But seriously, who doesn’t love pasta?
I originally started making this 2 weekends ago for Josh and I to have an easy Sunday dinner. I roasted the squash up in advance so I could quick pull it together whenever we decided we were hungry, and then my parents called and said they were swinging by with my sister and we should go get dinner. Uhh and waste that beautiful squash I just roasted? How about we don’t. Instead, I threw a second squash in the oven and doubled up on the recipe to have dinner for 5 (okay, but it was really more like 8 servings). I kind of marveled at how easy it was to go from dinner for 2 to feeding 5 – the beauty of a box of whole wheat shells! It gave me the extra time I needed to make some homemade rolls and a side salad, plus emergency tidy up the house for guests.
I also got 2 kinds of vegetables into my parents, which is basically a miracle on it’s own. My mom has some sensitivities to everything that’s delicious (broccoli, beans, peppers, onions, cabbage, soy — I could go on. If anyone knows WTH is up with that, let me know!) and my dad doesn’t like “leaves” or carrots. At least everyone likes a bowl of shells, right? Enough to eat those peas stuck into the sauce, too.
1½ c milk (any kind, I prefer unsweetened almond milk)
½ c vegetable stock or broth
salt and pepper to taste
¼ c pure maple syrup
¼ tsp rubbed sage
1½ c frozen peas
12 oz box whole wheat pasta shells
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Slice squash in half and scoop out seeds. Place cut side up on a baking sheet and drizzle/brush with olive oil, if using. Place in oven and bake for about 40 minutes, until flesh is easily pierced with a fork. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
Once cool, scrape the flesh out into a food processor or blender.
Roughly chop the garlic and add to the processor. Add the parmesan, cottage cheese, and milk. Process/blend until smooth. If space allows, you can add the broth. Transfer to a sauce pan (adding the broth if it wouldn’t fit in your processor — mine wouldn’t).
Whisk in the maple, sage, and salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until the sauce is hot. Add the peas, reduce heat, and cover, cooking until peas are hot (mine took 5 – 10 minutes).
Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package instructions.
Drain the pasta and toss in the sauce. Serve hot.
You can buy frozen squash puree (about 4 cups) to use in place of the fresh squash puree. I put the time to roast the squash in prep time instead of cook time. Nutritional estimate uses optional oil, fat free cottage cheese, and unsweetened almond milk.