Recipe: Baked Pumpkin and Cream Pasta

Baked Pumpkin and Cream Pasta, Courtesy:
Baked Pumpkin and Cream Pasta, Courtesy:


By using seasonal ingredients, you’ll stretch your food dollar and get the freshest tasting results.  This dish uses pumpkin (or butternut squash) for a wonderful Fall seasonal twist on a weeknight pasta dinner.  Serve it as a side dish with your favorite protein or as a vegetarian star of the meal.

1 1/2 pounds pumpkin or butternut squash, diced or sliced
Olive oil cooking spray
Salt and pepper
Freshly grated nutmeg
1 cup chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bundle Tuscan kale, chard or dandelion greens, stemmed and thinly sliced
1 pound penne or fusilli


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Arrange the pumpkin on a baking sheet and spray with olive oil spray, season with salt, pepper and nutmeg, and roast to tender, 30 minutes.
  3. Puree in a food processor (or mash) with the stock.
  4. Simmer the purée with the cream to thicken a bit; add half the cheese.
  5. In a skillet heat the olive oil, 2 turns of the pan, over medium heat.
  6. Add the garlic and stir for 1 to 2 minutes.
  7. Add the kale and wilt.
  8. Cook the pasta to al dente and save a small ladleful of starchy cooking water just before draining.
  9. Toss the pasta with the purée, greens and starchy water; transfer to baking dish and top with more cheese.
  10. Cool and store.
  11. Bring the pasta to room temperature to bake.
  12. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  13. Bake until brown and bubbly on top, 40 minutes or so from room temperature

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:

  • I finished the dish with just a pinch of red pepper flakes, before baking it, adding some zip and a touch of color.

Yield: 6 servings

Source:, Courtesy: Rachel Ray, Show: Rachel Ray’s Week in a Day, Episode: Tuscan American


National Linguine Day – September 15th

Happy National Linguine Day!

Linguine is a form of pasta, about 4 millimeters in width. It is a bit wider than spaghetti, but narrower than fettuccine. The name linguine means “little tongues” in Italian.  When is the last time you enjoyed a plate of linguine?

Linguine with Clam Sauce, Courtesy: Food Mingle Blog
Linguine with Clam Sauce, Courtesy: Food Mingle Blog

Are you a lover of linguine? If so (or even if you aren’t), try these linguine recipes to celebrate:

Linguine with Prosciutto and Olives
Linguine with Clam Sauce




Recipe: Egg Noodles with Mushrooms

Egg Noodles with Mushrooms, Courtesy:
Egg Noodles with Mushrooms, Courtesy:

Oh, those noodles! Toss egg noodles with sautéed mushrooms, shallots and fresh parsley for a comfort food fit for company.  Add chicken or turkey to stretch the servings and amp up the protein content.

1/2 pound wide egg noodles
2 Tbsp. butter
8 white mushrooms, sliced
1 shallot, finely chopped
A handful fresh parsley, chopped


  • Cook egg noodles until just tender in boiling salted water, about 6 minutes.
  • Saute sliced mushrooms and shallot in butter over moderate heat until mushrooms are tender, about 3 or 4 minutes.
  • Drain noodles and toss in with cooked mushrooms.
  • Add the parsley and season with a little salt, to taste.

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:

  • I used sliced Baby Bella mushrooms because they have more flavor than the white mushrooms, and they’re my favorite! I also doubled the amount of mushrooms, because, well…they’re my favorite!
  • If you don’t have a shallot, you can substitute an onion, but decrease the amount because onions have a deeper flavor than shallots and they aren’t as delicate.
  • I also added a pinch of course ground pepper for added taste.
  • This seemed a bit dry, so I added a splash of chicken stock and a splash of olive oil over the top just before serving.

Yield: 4 servings

Source:, Courtesy: Rachel Ray, Show: 30 Minute Meals, Episode: 30 Minute Passport to Vienna


Recipe: Zucchini Pasta with Ricotta

Zucchini Pasta with Ricotta, Courtesy:
Zucchini Pasta with Ricotta, Courtesy:

Is your garden full of zucchini? Or are your friends and family giving you zucchini from their own gardens? Here is a creative way to incorporate it into your dinner, other than sautéing it as a side.  Roast lengthwise slices of zucchini and combine them with linguine and some ricotta for a complete meal in one dish. Don’t let that garden bounty go to waste!

2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
2 pounds zucchini, thinly sliced lengthwise
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 pound linguine
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup ricotta


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

  2. Brush two rimmed baking sheets with oil.

  3. Arrange zucchini in a single layer on sheets and brush tops with oil; season with salt and pepper.

  4. Roast zucchini until tender and lightly golden in parts, 25 to 30 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through.

  5. Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling salted water, cook linguine according to package instructions.

  6. Drain pasta and return to pot.

  7. Add oil, lemon zest, and zucchini and toss to combine.

  8. Serve pasta topped with ricotta.

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:

  • If you don’t have any zucchini on hand, you can use yellow squash, but slice it a bit thicker as it is more delicate and zucchini.
  • Garnish with a zucchini blossom, if available.
  • Carmelized garlic and onions would amp up the flavor quotient. Of course, red pepper flakes would really heat it up.

Yield: 4 servings

Source:, Everyday Food – April, 2010


Recipe: Marinated Tortellini Garden Salad

Marinated Tortellini Garden Salad, Courtesy:
Marinated Tortellini Garden Salad, Courtesy:

The tortellini in this garden vegetable salad make it a great summer meal or side dish. Use almost any available vegetables to make it your own.

1 (9-oz.) pkg. refrigerated cheese-filled tortellini
2 cups frozen broccoli florets (or fresh if available)
½ medium cucumber, quartered lengthwise, cut into 1/4- inch slices
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
¼ cup sliced green onions
1/2 cup purchased Italian salad dressing


  1. Cook tortellini to desired doneness as directed on package, adding broccoli during last minute of cooking time.
  2. Drain; rinse with cold water to cool. Drain well.
  3. Meanwhile, in large bowl, combine all remaining ingredients
  4. Add cooked tortellini and broccoli to salad; toss gently to coat.
  5. Cover; refrigerate at least 3 hours to blend flavors.
  6. Stir gently before serving.

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:

  • Use your favorite/available vegetables for this salad: carrots, zucchini, beans, olives, etc.
  • Serve in lettuce wraps for a fun alternative.

Yield: 4 servings