Butternut with Tortellini and Walnut Cream Alfredo

Healthy butternut squash filled with creamy tortellini.  I use walnut cream in place of heavy cream for added nutrition. The combination is delicious!  It's my new favorite fall recipe!


Preheat oven to 400.

Cut squash in half lengthwise.

Scoop out the seeds.


1 butternut squash, 8-12 inches in length
salt and pepper

An ice cream scooper works great for this. .

Sprinkle salt and pepper to cover lightly. Let sit for a minute or two. Cover a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.

Turn the squash flesh side down.


Letting the salt sit for a minute or two dissolves it slightly and helps it adhere to the squash.

I like to bake squash flesh side down.  It bakes more evenly and prevents it from drying out.

Bake 30-45 minutes until tender all the way through.

Cut each half in half. Set aside. Scoop some squash out of the two flat pieces to form two small bowls.

 

In a medium saucepan heat the walnut cream and chicken broth. Bring to a simmer but do not boil.

Add parmesan and stir until melted.

Add salt and stir well.


1 c walnut cream (recipe below or click here for pictures)
1 c low sodium chicken broth
1 c freshly grated parmesan
1/2 t kosher salt
1/4 t fresh ground black pepper
 If you aren't using fresh parmesan use less and don't add the salt.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Add 1 T salt.



Add tortellini and cook 6-8 minutes.  Drain and set aside.


1 13 oz bag Barilla Three Cheese Tortellini (it's a dried tortellini in the pasta aisle)
1 T salt (to boil pasta)



Toss cream sauce with pasta.



Spoon into squash shells. Top with parmesan if desired.  Serve hot!

Problems

Oversalting: the salt in the recipe works well with a low sodium chicken broth and freshly shredded parmesan. If you use a full salt chicken broth or pre-grated parmesan don't add the extra salt. I would also add less of the pre-grated parmesan.

Butternut with Tortellini and Walnut Cream Alfredo
Serves 4

1 butternut squash 8-12 inches in length
salt and pepper

1 c walnut cream (recipe below or click here for pictures)
1 c low sodium chicken broth
1 c freshly grated parmesan
1/2 t kosher salt
1/4 t fresh ground black pepper

1 13 oz bag Barilla Three Cheese Tortellini (it's a dried tortellini in the pasta aisle)
1 T salt (to boil pasta)

Squash

Preheat oven to 400. Cut squash in half lengthwise. Using an ice cream scooper or spoon, scoop out the seeds. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to cover lightly. Let the (1)sit for a minute or two. Cover a jellyroll pan with foil or parchment paper. Turn the squash (2)flesh side down. Bake 30-45 minutes until tender all the way through. Cut each half in half.  Scoop some squash out of the two flat pieces to form two small bowls. Set aside.

Walnut Cream Alfredo
In a medium saucepan heat the walnut cream and chicken broth. Bring to a simmer but do not boil. Add (3)parmesan and salt.  Stir until the parmesan is melted.  Keep warm until torellini is cooked.

Tortellini
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 T salt. Add tortellini and cook 6-8 minutes. Drain.

Toss cream sauce with pasta.  Spoon into squash shells. Top with parmesan if desired.  Serve hot!


Walnut Cream
makes 1 1/2 cups

1 c walnuts (3.5 oz) 
1 c water (8 oz)

Measure walnuts. Rinse then cover in water.  Place in an airtight container and refrigerate (4)overnight.  Drain the water, rinse and drain again.  Place drained nuts in blender and add 1 c water.  Blend well 1-2 minutes.  It should be smooth and frothy.  Use immediately or cover and refrigerate 2-3 days.


Notes
1.  Letting the salt sit for a minute or two dissolves it slightly and helps it adhere to the squash.

2.  I like to bake squash flesh side down.  It bakes more evenly and prevents it from drying out.

3.  If you aren't using fresh parmesan use less and don't add the salt.

4.  For the smoothest texture, soak the nuts overnight.  If you have a very powerful blender you can skip this step and it will still be pretty smooth.


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