I wasn’t lying when I said I was on the pumpkin bandwagon, this is only recipe number 2 but Fall isn’t over yet! I’ve actually been planning to make this recipe since last year, but as usual, I got distracted by something shiny and then all of a sudden, Summer was here. I was tempted to just make it during summer, but I just couldn’t bring myself to make creamy pumpkin pasta on a hot July day, but really, do ya blame me? I don’t know what it is about heat, but my god does it make me avoid rich creamy dishes like the plague. Either way, my perseverance paid off and I finally got to crack out the cashews and pumpkin!I feel weird admitting this since I actually have a bunch of pumpkin recipes coming up on the blog, but out of all the squashes it’s probably one of my least favorites, with lucky #1 being that vile atrocity, also known as spaghetti squash (thanks to a mega gross recipe fail). It’s weird, you know how you can take an ingredient and really like it one way, and then absolutely despise it another? Like those people who hate tomatoes but love tomato sauce, well that’s me and pumpkin. In muffins? Awesome. In a sauce? Awesome. Roasted? Blech! Something just ain’t right about it, who knows, maybe I’ve been traumatized by all the horrible looking pumpkins I’ve carved over the years. Like I said, I’m totally down with pureeing the stuff and mixing it into other stuff, so it didn’t really shock me that I liked this pasta…like really liked it, I’d almost be willing to say that I kind of loved it, just don’t tell pumpkin, I don’t want them to get the wrong impression. That’d be kind of awkward.Besides for a big ol’ plate of mac n cheese, this is pretty much my perfect Fall pasta. It’s got pumpkin, cashews, cinnamon, nutmeg, magic and some other tasties blended up into a creamy kick ass sauce. Then I added some toothsome spelt pasta, hearty apple sausage and some fresh earthy sage because all those things make my stomach happy, and we don’t want to make it angry, that thing has one hell of a temper when it gets hangry.You can eat this the “proper” way by putting it on a plate and using these things we like to call utensils or even a napkin if you’re really fancy, or you can hover over the pan pulling out pieces of pasta with your fingers..er..I mean spoon..I, uh, totally didn’t eat it this way *averts eyes* I sprinkled some toasted pecans on top and also some vegan parmesan I got from Vegan Cuts, I actually have two jars of the stuff now, so I figure I best be using it. I only added a bit of nutmeg since I don’t like it when it overpowers a dish. Philip, hater of all things nutmeg, said it was really good, so if you’re a member of the nutmeg haters club, give it a chance before you write it off!
If you can’t get/don’t like/don’t eat Field Roast, you can just leave it out, I added it in to bulk up the pasta and because those apples sausages are like delicious gold to me! This was mega tasty on pasta but if you want to play around with it, the sauce would also be good on rice, sautéed greens, quinoa, veggies, all kinds of things.
CREAMY PUMPKIN SAGE PENNE
Say hello to pumpkin season with this quick and easy entree. Creamy Pumpkin Sage Penne makes for the perfect seasonal dinner.
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 Field Roast apple sage sausages, sliced (optional)
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 to 6 sprigs sage leaves, cut into slivers, about 2 tablespoons
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1 1/4 cup vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/3 cup cashews, soaked in water for 6 to 12 hours
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, ground or freshly grated
- Coarse salt and black pepper
- 12 ounces penne (white, whole wheat, spelt, rice, etc.)
- 1/2 cup toasted walnuts or pecans, roughly chopped, for garnish
- Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and set aside.
- While pasta is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Heat the oil, then add the sausages, cook until browned on both sides. Remove from pan and add the onion. Sauté until the onions are tender and translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for a few minutes more. Remove from heat.
- In a high speed blender, add the onion, wine, broth, milk, pumpkin, cashews, nutritional yeast, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Blend until smooth.
- Pour sauce back in pan, add the sage and bring to a low simmer. Simmer mixture 5 to 10 minutes to thicken sauce.
- Add the drained pasta and sausage to the sauce and toss over low heat for 1 minute. Garnish the pasta with sage leaves and toasted nuts.
To make this gluten-free, use a gluten-free pasta such as rice, quinoa, corn, etc.