Adapted from Joshua McFadden's Pumpkin Bolognese in "Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables"
- 1 small-ish butternut squash, halved & seeded
- extra virgin olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 small-ish celery root, diced to 1/4"
- 1 medium-ish carrot, diced to 1/4"
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup whole milk, heavy cream, or half & half
- 1 lb pasta, any shape
- freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Drizzle butternut squash with olive oil and season with salt & pepper. Roast on a sheet pan until fork-soft, 30-45 minutes. Allow squash to cool.
- While squash is cooling, heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat and cook ground beef, breaking up chunks with a wooden spoon, until just cooked through. Transfer to a bowl.
- Add the veggies (minus the squash), season with salt and pepper, reduce heat slightly, and saute until onions are fully translucent, and celeriac and carrots are soft.
- Add meat to the veggies and mix thoroughly. Add the white wine, and simmer until liquid has nearly evaporated.
- While wine is simmering, scoop squash flesh into a food processor and blend until smooth.
- Back at the stove, add milk or cream, mix thoroughly, and simmer until liquid has reduced about halfway. Stir in pureed squash, and reduce heat to very low.
- Simmer for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring every 15-20 minutes, adjusting heat and/or adding water if needed.
- Cook pasta according to directions on package, then using tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer pasta to pot with bolognese and combine thoroughly. Serve with grated parmigiano-reggiano and extra black pepper!
To make this somewhat time-intensive dish a little more weeknight friendly, roast and puree the squash ahead of time. Otherwise, plan to chop your other veggies while the squash is roasting, and count on a solid two hours start to finish (but there's plenty of time to drink wine during that last hour!).