There’s a cool crispness in the air this time of year. It’s a refreshing reminder of the months that have been and an invigorating invitation to start planning for the Holiday Season. As my family starts coming around, I’m often delighted to entertain and this recipe is one of my favorites. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

BUTTERNUT SQUASH RAVIOLI WITH BROWN BUTTER

Serves 8

3 lb butternut squash

olive oil

2 T shallots, minced

1 T garlic, minced

1 can water chestnuts, minced

1/2 c parmesan cheese, grated

Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste

½ t fresh lemon juice or to taste

64 wonton skins or pot sticker wrappers

2 large eggs and 2 T cold water

extra-virgin olive oil as needed

24 fresh sage leaves or sprigs of tarragon

1/2 c unsalted butter

4 T pine nuts, toasted

1/3 c shaved parmesan

¼ c flat leaf parsley, chopped

Preheat oven to 375°.  Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds.  Lightly coat with olive oil, place on a foil covered sheet pan and roast until soft, about 30-40 minutes.  Sauté shallots and garlic until softened.  When squash is cool, scrape out flesh and mash in a medium sized bowl.  Add shallot mixture, water chestnuts and parmesan.  Season to taste with salt, pepper and lemon juice.  Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Lay out the pot sticker wrappers and brush with the egg wash.  Place a generous tablespoon of the squash mixture in the middle of each wrapper and cover with a second wrapper.  Press closely around filling to seal.  Trim as needed, and then cook at a low boil to al dente, about 2-4 minutes.  Drain and toss with olive oil to prevent sticking.  Heat 1/8” of olive oil in a small pan until very hot.  Test the heat with a tarragon leaf, it should sizzle immediately.  Fry herbs until crisp and drain on a paper towel.  Add butter to the olive oil and cook until browned.  Pour over ravioli and toss to coat.  Add pine nuts, parmesan and parsley and serve with my Secret Blend Red Wine.