Rigatoni Kale Pesto with Butternut Squash
- 1 Box Banza Rigatoni
- 1.5 lbs butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 1/2 extra virgin olive oil
- 1 bunch lacinato kale, center ribs removed
- 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
- 2 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- zest of 1 lemon
- Freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste
- grated parmesan cheese, for serving
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut cubes into 1-inch pieces, place on a baking sheet, and toss with olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Spread pieces into an even layer, making sure there is space between them. Roast, stirring squash pieces once or twice, until golden brown and tender, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; have ready a bowl of ice water. Drop kale into boiling water and cook for 45 seconds. Use tongs or slotted spoon to transfer kale to ice water. Bring water in pot back to a boil, adding more if necessary so there is enough to cook pasta.
- Drain kale well, then wrap tightly in a dry kitchen towel and squeeze thoroughly to remove any excess moisture. Roughly chop leaves. When water in pot comes back to a boil, cook pasta al dente.
- In a food processor, pulse together kale, nuts, garlic, salt and lemon zest until mixture is smooth and salt has dissolved. With motor running, slowly drizzle in the oil until fully incorporated. Taste and add more salt dissolved in a little lemon juice, if necessary.
- Drain pasta, reserving a little cooking water. Toss pasta with kale pesto and some pasta cooking water if necessary to help it coat pasta. Add cheese, lemon juice and salt to taste. Serve topped with squash and more cheese.