- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 lb. butternut squash , (½ a small squash, sliced in half vertically), peeled and sliced into ¼-inch-thick half moons
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ⅛–¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper, depending on your penchant for spice
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 12 ounces linguine pasta
- 1 stick salted butter
- 1 cup walnuts, toasted until golden and coarsely chopped
- 16–20 stems fresh sage, leaves plucked from stems
This one-pan fall dish comes together in a flash. Be sure to season each batch of squash slices as they sauté, and be generous with the sage. The toasty flavors harmonize for a quintessential autumnal meal, bringing everyone back to the pan for seconds.
1. Prepare the squash: Heat a large fry pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the olive oil and lower the heat to medium. Sauté the squash slices in batches, sprinkling about one-quarter of the nutmeg and cayenne and seasoning with salt and pepper. Cook for 3 minutes on the first side, tilting the pan to coat the squash slices in oil, then flip and sprinkle again with the nutmeg and cayenne. Sauté for 3 more minutes or until the squash slices are translucent and caramelized in parts. Transfer to a dish and set aside. Repeat with the remaining squash. Once all slices are cooked, transfer to the same dish.
2. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil and cook pasta al dente according to package instructions.
3. While the pasta cooks, melt butter in the pan used to cook the squash. After foaming subsides, swirl occasionally for 5 to 7 minutes or until the butter produces a nutty aroma and deepens to a toasty brown. Add the walnuts and swirl to coat. Add the sage leaves and toss to coat. When the pasta is cooked, use tongs to transfer the noodles to the brown butter mixture and toss to thoroughly coat. Turn the heat off. Add the squash back to the pan and toss together to combine with the pasta.
4. Divide the pasta evenly into 4 bowls, season with freshly ground black pepper and serve.