Fall Flavors, Poll Winners

Pumpkin Ravioli

After this past week’s baby food re-do poll left me thinking about winter squash and apples, I realized that a combination with the previously victorious, pumpkin ravioli could turn out to be a pretty fantastic  meal. Well, after these two courses and my first morning in a sweater, I think it’s safe to say, I’m ready for the fall!

So for the first course, a pumpkin “ravioli” with greens tossed in an apple cider vinaigrette, you’ll notice the absence of a pasta. I had originally intended on making a fairly traditional version but then something in my head clicked. Some of the best ravioli’s feature a light and flavorful ricotta mixture and by creating a pumpkin filling, I was afraid I’d lose just that. So instead, slicing rounds of pumpkin and roasting them in the oven as the carrier for the ricotta filling, this dish became a flavor packed and light beginning to the meal. With a bit of curry powder and cinnamon mixed in the filling, there was no mistaking this dish for what it was meant to be!

Spaghetti Squash w/ Apples, Fennel, and Sausage

With this new version of ravioli as a starter, it made perfect sense to have another substitute for spaghetti in this sausage, apple and fennel pasta dish. And since spaghetti squash is one of my favorites, and I just so happened to receive one in last week’s CSA…well you get the point. But the object of the poll was to truly re-do a classic baby food combination. Apples and squash have a natural balance in flavors and in seasonality which made the taste part easy. But the reason baby food is baby food, is the texture (or lack thereof). But great “adult” food is all about textural contrast. So sauteing apples and fennel with a bit of chicken sausage and adding in a handful of roasted pumpkin seeds was a great way to add some crisp all while complimenting the delicious spaghetti squash.

What a way to get caught up on poll winners!

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