Monday, February 22, 2010

Butternut Squash Parmesan Pasta Bake

I saw the recipe for Eggplant Parmesan Pasta Bake on Honey, What's Cooking?  I'm not a big fan of eggplant, so decided to try substituting butternut squash.  Overall, the butternut squash was a good substitute.  It didn't bread as well, but otherwise worked fine.


3 cups marinara sauce
200 grams pasta (I used spaghetti)
1 butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and cut into 1/4 inch rings
3/4 cup bread crumbs (I used 2 pieces of bread)
1 egg
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Basil (fresh would be better, we only had dried)
salt and pepper

Peel the butternut squash and cut into thin (1/4 inch) rings.  Cut out the seeds.  Salt and pepper the squash and let stand.  (I don't know if this actually worked and would probably skip it in the future.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Get out a baking tray.  Whip the egg in a bowl.  Place the bread crumbs in a separate bowl.  

Dip the squash in the egg on both sides, then dip in the bread crumbs.  Put the breaded squash on the baking tray and place in the oven.  

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the squash is soft.  Remove the tray. 

About 10 minutes before the squash completes cooking, begin cooking the pasta.  Since it will be baked, the pasta should be undercooked by about two minutes so it doesn't get too soggy.  I used spaghetti with a recommended baking time of 10-12 minutes and cooked it for 8 minutes.

Drain the pasta and put it in an ovenproof baking dish.  Spoon one cup of the marinara sauce on top of the pasta.

Add 1/2 of the butternut squash to the pasta and sauce.

Sprinkle half the cheese (mozzarella and Parmesan) on top of the squash.

Add additional layers:  one cup sauce, butternut squash, final cup of sauce.  Then cover the casserole with the remaining cheese.

Cover (I used the lid of the pot, tinfoil will work as well) and bake for 30 minutes.  (The oven should still be at 350 degrees.)  Remove the cover and let the cheese brown for about five minutes, then remove the dish.  Add basil.  Cool for 5-10 minutes, the serve.


LaModernGirl said...

that looks good! My vegetarian Aarica will have to try that one soon. I don't think squash should stand either, it looks just fine lying down by itself.

AM said...

Finally LA Mod Girl is commenting - I know she's been reading!