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Cheesy Butternut Squash & Sausage Pasta with Cranberry-Apple Relish

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In need of one more fall recipe? We have you covered with our Wednesday Recipe of the Week - Cheesy Butternut Squash & Sausage Pasta with Cranberry-Apple Relish! This wonderful recipe showcases all of the traditional fall flavors in an easy-to-make hearty dish. The combination of roasted squash, savory sausage and a sweet, yet tart cranberry-apple relish will remind you winter is not here just yet!

Serving Size: 
4-6
Ingredients: 

For the Mac N’ Cheese:
1 lb. Pappardelle’s Plain Rooster Comb 
1 lb. ground pork sausage
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded & diced
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups turkey stock (or milk), heated until steaming
2 cups medium-aged Gouda cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Pinch of nutmeg
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt & pepper, to taste

For the Cranberry-Apple Relish:
1 cup fresh cranberries
1 medium Gala apple, cored, peeled & finely diced
3 springs fresh sage, stems removed, minced
Juice from 1/2 navel orange
1/4 cup white wine
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup water

Instructions: 

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil and cook pasta, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 10-12 mins. Drain pasta under cold running water to stop cooking process. Reserve pasta.
3. On a foil-lined baking sheet, drizzle a small amount of EVOO over squash and season with salt & pepper. Roast in oven for 25 mins., or until tender enough to puncture squash pieces with a fork. Remove from oven when finished and reserve.
4. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the sausage, breaking apart as it cooks, for about 8 mins. Once fully cooked, remove with a slotted-spoon and drain on paper towel, while disposing of extra grease in pan.
5. In the same pan on medium-high heat, add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add butter and allow to melt. Once melted, whisk in flour and continue to whisk while roux cooks for about 2-3 mins. Slowly, while whisking, pour in warm turkey stock. Cook mixture over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 5 mins. Add nutmeg and cayenne. Slowly add the cheeses, ensuring to stir until fully melted and combined after each addition. Reserve over very low heat.
6. To prepare cranberry-apple relish, combine all ingredients in a small saucepot and cook over medium heat, allowing it to simmer. Cook until cranberry skins are tender and have split, about 15 mins. (Liquid should be sweet and slightly tart and thick in texture.) Turn off heat and reserve.
7. Making sure cheese sauce is still hot, toss pasta, cheese sauce, sausage, and butternut squash together, until combined, in a large serving bowl. Place servings on plates and top with cranberry-apple relish. Enjoy! (Suggestion: reserve seeds from squash, rinse, and toast in oven with salt until crisp. Use as garnish, if desired.)

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