Pumpkin tortelli (pronounced tortayllee) with amaretto cookies are a traditional dish from Emilia Romagna, a Northern Italian region. This version with butternut squash has a smoother and oiler flavor: the amaretto cookies complement perfectly the sweetness of the butternut squash, and the final searing of the tortelli in the pan with the brown sage butter adds a nice texture to it all. Amaretto cookies are a crunchy Northern Italian traditions, made with almonds. They can be found in all major American supermarkets. As for tortelli, they are a Northern Italian type of ravioli, made by dividing your pasta dough in two layers: on the first layer you put the filling in small batches, and you then cover it all with the second layer of dough. You then use a pizza roller or a knife to cut the various tortelli. - tuscanfoodie —tuscanfoodie
Test Kitchen Notes
Tuscanfoodie’s tortelli are reminiscent of classic Pumpkin Tortelli and Pumpkin Amaretti Gnocchi. The filling, with its roasted squash, cheese and amaretti crumbs, has good flavor, and the substantial amount of breadcrumbs gives it enough body so that it can mound well. The browned butter, crisp sage and touch of amaretti cookie crumbs add richness and texture. If you can’t find amaretti cookies, try almond biscotti. And if you prefer your pasta soft around the edges, rather than with a crunchy crust, just put your drained pasta in a serving dish and pour the sage butter over it without cooking it further. They’re best served immediately. - SallyCan —The Editors
- Serves 4
- Pasta dough and butternut squash filling
All purpose flour for the pasta dough
Eggs for the pasta dough
butternut squash, peeled and seeded (1 medium squash)
Parmesan cheese, grated
eggs for the filling
Amaretto cookies, reduced in crumbles
- Brown sage butter
Parmesan, grated, to sprinkle on the plated dish
- Peel and seed the butternut squash. Cut it in 4-5 inches pieces and put them in a greased pan. Sprinkle with 2 table spoons of olive oil, cover the pan with aluminium foil an bake at 375F for 1 hour (or until the squash is tender enough to be cut with a fork).
- While the squash cooks, prepare your pasta dough. If you have a pasta maker, follow the instructions that came with it. If you don't, put the flower on a working surface, shaping it like a volcano. Add two eggs, a pinch of salt, and knead for 5-8 minutes. If the dough seems too dry (i.e. there is still loose flour on the working surface) add 1 tablespoon of water. When you are done, create a ball and let the dough rest for at least 30 minutes, covered.
- When the squash is cooked, let it cool for 5 minutes, then put it in a bowl and smash it with a fork. Add the breadcrumbs and mix. Add half of the amaretto cookies' crumbles, the 7 ounces of grated Parmesan cheese, the nutmeg, 2 eggs, salt and pepper. Mix everything together until you have a uniform mixture.
- Take your dough, divide it in two batches and work it either through your pasta maker or with a hand roll. You want to create two very thin layers. If the pasta is too moist, add some flour. If it is too dry, add very small quantities of water.
- Once you have rolled the two layers, set one aside. Use a spoon to put small batches of the filling on the first layer of dough, at a 1.5-2 inches distance from each other. Every batch should be roughly the size of a egg yolk. Once you are done, take the second layer and put it on top of the first. Cut the various tortelli in rectangular shape with a pizza roller or a knife, and seal each of them individually, by pressing and twisting the edges.
- Boil 4 to 6 quarts of water, and then add a pinch of salt to it. Delicately put your tortelli in the water, and let them cook for 10 minutes, stirring gently from time to time. You need to be careful not to break your tortelli while you put them in the water.
- While the tortelli cook, melt your butter, add the sage leaves, and let the butter become brown and the sage leaves become crispy. This should take 4-5 minutes, but you need to pay attention, as you may need more or less time.
- Once the tortelli are ready, take them out gently, let them drain, and then add them to the pan with the brown butter and sage, and cook for at least 3 more minutes, on a medium-high fire, stirring occasionally (the more you live them in the pan, the more they will form a crunchy crust on the outside). You want the tortelli to be coated in butter. Before taking the ravioli out, sprinkle the remaining amaretto cookies crumbles on them and give the tortelli a final stir.
- Plate the tortelli. Add grated parmesan cheese and serve!