Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni Pasta

Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni Pasta

I recently wrote here about my absolute exhaustion with my own cooking. It’s why I welcome the new fall season. The last time I made all my chilis, soups and flaky pot pies I couldn’t even fathom a life that included wearing a mask in public. I also couldn’t imagine that I’d be kept from seeing my family across the border in the United States for 7 months. But here where are in this crazy, new reality.

In the initial weeks of the pandemic, folks turned to their kitchens for comfort–comfort in the process of cooking and baking, and the satisfaction of the dishes they loved. I didn’t create a sourdough started but I basically jumped on every other baking bandwagon. And then I became completely sick of my own food. As I said in my earlier post, I also went tastebud blind–no longer craving anything. I’ve been completely indifferent to everything and not having a desire for any one meal in my repertoire.

This dish is going to bring me back from my utter annoyance with making food. When I created the recipe, Scarlett and I were excited about it. We stood over the pot on the stove hungrily eating it and both finished a full serving before we ever sat down. It’s impossibly creamy, delicious and has just a little heat from the crushed red pepper. It’s a new dish for us so I find it exciting to make. I also crave it and that makes me feel happy. Maybe I’m getting my cooking mojo back just in time for cuddly, winter dishes.

Photo by Ashley van der Laan

Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni Pasta

Makes: 6 servings
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup 18% cream
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper fakes
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 1 lb. rigatoni pasta
  • basil leaves for serving

Instructions

  • Heat the olive oil and butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the shallot and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Stir in the pumpkin, cream, chicken broth and crushed red pepper flakes, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens slightly. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  • Meanwhile, in a large pot of salted boiling water, cook rigatoni according to package direction for al dente. Using a large slotted spoon, transfer pasta from pot to sauce; stirring to coat in the sauce.
  • On a large serving dish, plate pasta with some fresh basil and serve.

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