Butternut squash add creaminess, color and nutrition to this still decadent version of a healthier Fettuccine Alfredo.
For the squash puree:
- 1 (3 pound) butternut squash, cut in half and seeds removed (save seeds for roasting!)
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
For the pasta:
- 1 pound fettuccine or linguine (I use half whole wheat and half regular pasta)
- 2 –3 tablespoons pasta water, as needed
For the sauce:
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 cup low-fat milk, warmed in microwave for 1 minute
- 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- For the squash: preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place squash, cut sides up on a baking pan with a lip (to catch any juice drippings) and drizzle each half with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Bake for about 45 -60 minutes or until flesh is soft. Remove from oven and cool for about 10 minutes.
- Scoop flesh out of skin and add to blender or food processor. Puree until smooth (sometimes I add a few tablespoons of water or milk to help the process.) This makes about 1 1/2 cups. Set aside.
- Cook fettuccine in a large pot according to package instructions. Save some pasta water when draining and add pasta to a large serving bowl.
- While pasta is cooking, make the sauce. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Whisk in flour and then slowly, pour warm milk into pot, whisking as you go. Whisk frequently until roux starts to simmer rapidly and thicken a bit. Reduce to low heat and mix in butternut squash puree until well incorporated. Mix in 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and add a few tablespoons of pasta water if the sauce is too thick. Remove from heat.
- Pour butternut squash sauce over hot pasta, add pepper and salt and toss well. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and serve.