Monday, February 4, 2013

butternut squash + chickpea pasta [gluten free]

So, who watched the Super Bowl last night? I'm sure all we'll be hearing about is the power outage. The Outage. The Power Outage Super Bowl. And what about the commercials? I'm telling you, I feel like the commercials are becoming increasingly lamer every year. I remember when the Super Bowl commercials were funny. Like, the majority of them were funny. Not just a few. There were some good ones last night, and some really terrible ones. Before we get to today's dish, we've got to discuss some commercials. Here are my top three picks for the best and and the worst:

Best Commercials
1. The Oreo library commercial. Definitely the funniest commercial of the night, hands down. Fiiiirre!!!
2. The Tide commercial. I love it when things are taken to ridiculous extremes. And I loved the ending. Even though I was sort of rooting for the 49er's.
3. The Space Babies commercial. Very cute. Uvoplaywheelsonthebus!!!

Honorable mentions:
The Doritos goat commercial. It's a goat. Eating Doritos. Done.
Taco Bell's Viva Young commercial. That's what I'm going to be like when I'm old.

Worst Commercials
1. GoDaddy, the one with Bar Reafeli. This commercial made me want to empty the entire contents of my stomach. I'm not even including a link to this commercial. It was just gross. Disgusting.
2. The Bud Light superstition commercials. They were just weird.
3. Beck's Sapphire commercial. Again, just weird. Why is there a singing black fish? And why is it trying to be all suave and smooth? I just don't understand. The only acceptable place for singing fish is The Little Mermaid.

Mixed Bag
Budweiser's "Brotherhood" commercial. It was sweet, but it made it want to cry! I don't want to cry when I'm watching the Super Bowl. That's just not okay.

So that's my little wrap up of the Super Bowl commercials. Now, let's get onto the pasta! I was inspired to make this dish while flipping through this month's issue of Bon Appetit. The magazine included a recipe for fiorentini with butternut squash in their Seven Perfect Pastas article. The squash is shredded, so it almost acts like a cheese. Sort of. In my mind, anyway. So, I decided to use gluten-free corn macaroni for the pasta and to throw in some chickpeas for some added protein. Oh my goodness. Deliciousness. The shredded butternut squash really does mimic cheese, so it was sort of like a mac and cheese dish. Only with squash. And chickpeas. And I also threw in some greens at the end for some color.

butternut squash + chickpea pasta
gluten free, dairy free
recipe inspired by Bon Appetit

// ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 cups shredded butternut squash (about half of a medium squash, peeled)
1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
about 2 tablespoons of dried sage (if you can, use fresh sage! I did not have any, so dried sage it was. If you can, use about 1/4 cup of fresh sage)
Kosher salt
Fresh ground pepper
about 12 oz of corn elbows (I used Mrs. Leeper's)
some greens (baby spinach, baby arugula, mixed greens -- whatever floats your boat!)

// directions
Cook the pasta to al dente. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large saute or sauce pan. I ended up using two pans since there was so much butternut squash! Add squash, chickpeas and sage and cook while stirring until the squash and chickpeas start to brown. Add a little salt and pepper.

Once the pasta is done cooking, add it to the butternut squash and chickpeas and mix it all around. Serve it with some greens on top. Enjoy!

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