Walnut, butternut squash and pancetta pansotti


I have to admit I fell in love a bit with this recipe when I heard that pansotti means “pot bellies” in Italian!  I have also really been enjoying walnuts in pasta dishes lately – remember the post using California walnuts with the butternut squash and walnut sauce on homemade pasta?

I am so pleased Neil learned to make pasta at one of his Culinary Arts Italian cuisine classes – it’s amazing how easy it it is and it’s so satisfying!  We were fortunate enough to have the use of a pasta roller on loan from one of his colleagues and we set to using some ingredients we had on hand to make the little pot bellied pasta.

The filling is basically puréed butternut squash, toasted walnuts, pancetta and some parsley:

And I tried to make them as “belly-like” as possible…

They turned out marvellously – so flavourful and tasty with great texture from the walnuts.  I served them with a little olive oil drizzled over, some flat leaf parsley, grated parmesan and some crushed walnuts.  This recipe (or adaptations of it) is definitely a keeper.



Walnut, butternut squash and pancetta pansotti filling

Recipe adapted from Epicurious (March 2002) Walnut and Pancetta Pansoti with Asparagus in Parmesan Broth

1 (3-ounce) piece pancetta (Italian unsmoked cured bacon; not lean), finely chopped (2/3 cup)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup walnuts (2 ounces), finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
salt and freshly black pepper to taste

Make pansotti filling:
Cut butternut squash in halves, oil and salt and pepper the cut halves.  Roast squash at 350F for about 45 minutes or until “scoopable”.  Scoop out flesh and set aside.

Cook pancetta in oil in a large heavy skillet over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until golden and fat is rendered, 10 to 12 minutes. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is well browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer mixture to a bowl. Stir in cooled butternut squash flesh, walnuts, parsley, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and pepper into mixture in bowl. Cool filling.



41 Responses to Walnut, butternut squash and pancetta pansotti

  1. bunkycooks May 3, 2010 at 08:09 #

    Your ravioli look very good! I need to try these. I always love butternut squash with pasta.

  2. lululu May 3, 2010 at 09:10 #

    Home-made pasta is always the best. How perfect is that to have it fresh with such delicious filling!

  3. Tracey@Tangled Noodle May 3, 2010 at 10:07 #

    This is the only time I would ever say that I want a huge pot belly! They look so tender and savory; reading the recipe has initiated the drool sequence.

  4. Kristi Rimkus May 3, 2010 at 10:17 #

    I’m very impressed you made home made pasta. Love the filling!

  5. 5 Star Foodie May 3, 2010 at 10:34 #

    Delicious! The filling looks excellent!

  6. Mr. Neil May 3, 2010 at 11:25 #

    I have to say, with all the various squash we get in our organic delivery, it’s been a mini challenge right there to find new ways to use it — especially in the autumn and winter months when the squash deliveries are plentiful!

    This one is a delight, and I find very “summery”, in fact.

    Still experimenting with different pastas…look for my spinach one soon.

  7. The Duo Dishes May 3, 2010 at 18:30 #

    Thanks for sharing this one. Homemade pasta is the way to go, but of course, anything with butternut squash and pancetta will be perfect.

  8. Nicole @ Making Good Choices May 3, 2010 at 19:25 #

    Out of all the things I’ve made I haven’t tried making my own pasta yet. This recipe is def one I am bookmarking to keep around. How did you stop your self from eating it all?? Beautiful!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 4, 2010 at 21:48 #

      Oh it didn’t actually make that much – Neil was exhausted from rolling out probably enough pasta for 16 bellies and we shared them amongst 6 people! But yes, I could have eaten them all!

  9. RJ Flamingo May 3, 2010 at 19:42 #

    I’m embarrassed to say, that with one thing and another, I still haven’t broken in my KA pasta attachment. This is totally inspiring, Mardi!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 4, 2010 at 21:48 #

      Thanks – this one didn’t use the KA pasta attachment but an old style pasta roller. I *want* that KA one…

  10. penny aka jeroxie May 3, 2010 at 22:25 #

    I should make some soon! Been awhile and since I have more work bench space, no more excuses for me

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 4, 2010 at 21:47 #

      That’s right Penny – you get right on that! We have NO countertop space and managed it soo…..

  11. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction May 3, 2010 at 22:56 #

    Ooh, these look incredible. I adore butternut squash and pasta. I bought some butternut squash to make soup this week, but now I’m contemplating making some of these instead.

  12. Val Outmezguine May 4, 2010 at 10:42 #

    They look so amazing! You make it seem so easy!

  13. k a b l o o e y May 4, 2010 at 20:27 #

    Oh my, does that look good. I also love squash or pumpkin ravioli, if they’re savory and not like pie filling. Yours sound perfect and I also love seeing the plump little belly. (Reminds me of my daughter…)

  14. Brad May 4, 2010 at 22:42 #

    Yum these sound and look really yummy, wi9sh I could at some right now

  15. Special K May 5, 2010 at 01:34 #

    I did not realize how much of a flavor punch parsley makes to my italian dishes. Last night I had some roasted potatoes with lemon zest, garlic and parsley and the flavor simply floored me. You better believe that if I had a pasta machine (how much time to roll those suckers?) I’d be making these….have you ever tried drying them>

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 8, 2010 at 08:25 #

      Actually it didn’t take that long to roll them out (Neil is pretty good at it!) and no, never tried drying them – what would that do?

  16. Megan Gordon May 5, 2010 at 03:18 #

    a) Yay! Neil cooks, too (and is taking classes to boot) and
    b) I’d love just about anything with pot belly in the name.

    These look fantastic. I know folks usually go for butternut squash in the fall, but it’s one of my favorite flavors all year round. Thanks for another great recipe, Mardi!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 8, 2010 at 08:26 #

      Yes it’s fast becoming one of my favourite flavours too! And of course Neil cooks – he would be banished from the house otherwise! 😉

  17. Conor @ HoldtheBeef May 5, 2010 at 03:29 #

    I’ve never wanted a potbelly so bad! I love butternut punkin, have just been drooling over photos of some biguns at a friend’s farm.

  18. Fuji Mama May 6, 2010 at 21:30 #

    Holy yumminess!! I love homemade pasta and love knowing what pansotti means!

  19. Christine @ Fresh Local and Best May 8, 2010 at 11:32 #

    Isn’t fresh pasta the best? The combination sounds spectacular!

  20. Cat May 17, 2010 at 01:20 #

    your pasta looks beautiful! i can’t imagine making homemade pasta – i’ll stick with my cheater’s wonton wrappers. 🙂


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