To celebrate we’re giving you a sneak peak at the deliciousness that waits inside with this tasty recipe for pasta bake. Not only does it taste amazing it is also healthy and a great way to use up any pumpkins you may have left over from Halloween. It may not be the quickest recipe, but it’s well worth the wait.
1 hour 30 minutes | Serves 4-6
– One large pumpkin or butternut squash
– Half a head of cauliflower broken into florets, and its leaves, chopped coarsely
– 250g wholewheat pasta
– 1 x 400g can tomatoes, chopped or plum
– 2 garlic cloves in their skins
– 3-4 sage leaves, chopped coarsely
– Nutmeg, grated
–Two big handfuls of walnuts, crushed
– Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 200C. Slice the pumpkin or squash into wedges (keep the skin and seeds on until later) and place onto a baking sheet (you may need two), then add a little water and season. Place onto the top shelf of the oven and after 20-25 minutes, put the cauliflower onto a separate baking sheet (again, add water and salt and pepper), move the pumpkin to the bottom shelf of the oven, and cook for another 25-30 minutes. In the last ten minutes of cooking, place the whole garlic cloves in with the cauliflower. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Cook the pasta in salted water for 8-10 minutes, drain and spread evenly across the base of a large oven dish. Once the pumpkin or squash has cooled, remove the skin and seeds and place in a large bowl with the cauliflower and its leaves. Stir in the tomatoes, half fill the empty can with water then add to the bowl. Stir through the sage and garlic (skins removed) and a generous grating of nutmeg, and blend the mixture in batches. If you don’t have a blender, simply put the sauce on a low heat for about 10 minutes and use a wooden spoon to gently crush the cauliflower and pumpkin/squash.
Spread the sauce evenly on top of the pasta. Crush the walnuts and scatter evenly on top of the sauce. Add more nutmeg and salt and pepper, then bake on the top shelf of the oven for 25-30 minutes. Serve with green vegetables – or on its own.
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Sarah Philpott is a freelance writer and food enthusiast who lives in Swansea. Her first cookery book, The Occasional Vegan, was published in 2018 by Seren Books and her food blog (https://veggingit.wordpress.com/) shares her passion for eating and cooking the vegan way. Sarah’s hearty, home-cooked recipes prove that being vegan isn’t all about kale and nut roasts and her writing takes a common-sense approach to eating to suit your lifestyle and budget, while debunking the myth that eating well comes at a cost.