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Baked Pumpkin Pasta with Sage and Lots of Cheese will be your new favorite grown-up mac-and-cheese.
In keeping with the October theme of pumpkin, we are sharing a recipe here that my daughter said, “Never give this recipe to anyone!” about, because it is that good. (Why we want to hoard it for ourselves is another story.)
No kidding, Baked Pumpkin Pasta with Sage and Lots of Cheese might be the most delicious baked pasta we have ever put together (in other words, made up). The shell pasta traps this slightly sweet mix of creamy pumpkin and cheese, and the sage is the herby addition that not only tastes of fall but also pairs beautifully with the pumpkin. More cheese on top, including pockets of ricotta, produces a gooey, crispy lid.
Whether you have a socially distanced group of people coming for Halloween, or you’re just having an October dinner at home, Baked Pumpkin Pasta with Sage and Lots of Cheese needs to be the star. Just be sure to make extra, because this will go fast. Think of it as your favorite new grown-up mac-and-cheese…but better!
1 pound conchiglie rigate (or penne rigate)
1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
1 cup whole milk
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1 cup grated gruyere, divided
1 cup grated parmesan, divided
½ cup ricotta, divided
1 tablespoon minced fresh sage
1 large garlic clove, grated
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¾ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water for 7 minutes. Drain and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin and milk until smooth. Stir in the grated chesses: 1 ½ cups of the cheddar, ¾ cup of the gruyere, ¾ cup of the parmesan and ¼ cup of the ricotta. Add the sage, garlic, salt and pepper, stirring to combine, then add the pasta and stir to coat.
Pour the pasta into the prepared baking dish. Dollop the remaining ricotta on top of the pasta, and sprinkle the remaining grated cheeses over all.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is browned. Let the pasta sit for 5 minutes before serving.