I also found the bake incredibly savoury and regretted leaving out the sugar. I added a few sliced tomatoes on top and squeezed lime juice over it the second night. It was much improved. Maybe more lemon juice in the mix and more tomatoes on top would address the savouriness, in future. More testing the taste of the mixture would also help. And a salad on the side and dollop of good chutney would have been great.
I made this pasta bake some weekends ago on a day of baking bread, making decorative paper dolls, supermarket shopping and watching the Mabo telemovie (very beautiful and sad). Sylvia was in the mood for tipping out everything on the floor and not eating dinner. At least the pumpkin could roast while I was at the supermarket (being directed by Sylvia to pick up any stray packets she spied on the floor)!
This pasta bake goes to Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes for Bookmarked Recipes, an event founded by Ruth's Kitchen Experiments.
Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
One year ago: Easey Cheesey Scones
Two years ago: NCR Zucchini Bread
Three years ago: They Who Dare: Masterchef and Ricki’s Tagine
Four years ago: Pumpkin soup and history
Five years ago: Full Moon Cupcakes
Pumpkin sage pasta bake
Adapted slightly from Veganomicon, via Where's the Beef?
Serves 8 (6 dinners and 2 lunches)
600g pumpkin, peeled and diced
4 tablespoons olive oil
375g pasta pieces
2 onion, sliced (I only had 1)
1 tablespoon brown sugar (I didn't use but will next time)
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp bush pepper mix
1/4 cup vegetable stock
5-8 fresh sage leaves, chopped
Sliced tomatoes for topping (optional)
tofu cashew ricotta
1/2 cup raw cashews
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic
600g firm tofu, drained
1 tbsp pesto (or 1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs*
1/3 cup walnut pieces, crushed with a fork
6-8 sage leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon mild paprika
1 tsp nutritional yeast flakes
1/2 tsp French lavendar salt
- Toss pumpkin with 2 tbsp olive oil and seasoning in a roasting dish. Roast at 180 C for 30 minutes or until soft. Mash roughly with a fork. Set aside.
- Cook pasta according to instructions on the packet. Drain and set aside.
- Gently fry onions in 2 tbsp olive oil for about 30-40 minutes until soft and caramelly. Stir frequently to check they aren't burning. Set aside. (I think I would add the sugar while frying onions next time.)
- Make cashew ricotta. Blend cashews, lemon juice, olive oil and garlic in food processor. Add tofu, pesto (or basil) and salt. Blend again until mixture is smooth. Set aside.
- Mix pumpkin, pasta, onions, ricotta, nutmeg, pepper and stock in a large mixing bowl (or in the baking tray if you don't have a large enough bowl).
- Make the crumb topping by frying the breadcrumbs with other ingredients in oil for 3-4 minutes until golden and crunchy (I skipped the frying because I only had dried breadcrumbs but I dry fried the walnuts and drizzled some oil through the mixture - see note*).
- Tip pasta and pumpkin mixture into a large baking tray (I used the same dish I had used to roast the pumpkin but can't remember if I washed it out or not!) and scatter with crumb topping. Arrange sliced tomatoes on top if using. Bake at 180 C for about 30 minutes (or in my oven about 40 minutes) or until crisp and golden brown on top (and if using tomatoes, until they are soft)
*Note: I substituted 1 and 1/2 cups of dried breadcrumbs for the fresh ones. It was far too much when the bake was fresh out of the oven. Neither crispy nor soft. Once the bake has sat for a couple of days and the breadcrumbs had soaked up the moisture it was fine. The solution? Maybe if I used dried breadcrumbs again I would maybe sprinkle some of the dried breadrumbs in layers through the pasta bake. Or maybe I could have lightly fried the dried breadcrumbs. Seems the fresh breadcrumbs are ideal.
On the stereo:
Quiet Revolution - Various Artists