Spicy Pumpkin Alfredo Sauce

My kitchen “batting average” has been a little off lately (hence the lack of new posts).  I’ve tried some new dishes, which were OK, but nothing to blog about.  (such a bad pun-except its true).  So when I read about a sauce made with butternut squash that took hours to make (because you have to peel, roast and puree it), I thought why not make it with canned pumpkin (better known as peeled, roasted and pureed squash  ready-to -use!).


I wanted more than just a sauce with pasta, so I added slowly sauteed onions, (mushrooms would be wonderful in this too).  And to add a better source of heat than just black pepper, I added black pepper crusted artisan salami.  Since the salami’s flavor is so strong, you only need to add 2-3 oz of it.  Thyme along with the sage (no, I don’t fry my sage leaves.  I’m just not that cool).


I had Romano cheese, so that’s the cheese for this one, but Parmesan or Asiago also would work well.

This meal also fits the idea of this site because start to finish is just barely 45 minutes.  That makes it great for weeknight meals.  My family was thoroughly WOW’d on this one.  I will be making it again soon.  I served this with a gorgonzola dried ravioli by Mezzaluna.  Delicious!


Makes 6-8 servings.

You’ll need:

olive oil, as needed

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

8oz crimini mushrooms sliced (optional)

2-3 oz pepper crusted salami, sliced and cut into smaller pieces

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried sage

8 oz pureed pumpkin

1 cup half & half

1/2 cup milk (to thin to sauce consistency)

1 cup Romano cheese, finely grated (additional cheese to serve)

1/2 chopped parsley (or cilantro)

salt to taste

1 lb of dried pasta (cooked to al dente)

Put a large pot of water onto boil.  Add salt if desired, cook pasta to al dente according to package directions, drain and set aside).

While waiting for the water to boil….

Heat a medium large skillet over medium heat.  Add olive oil and onions (and mushrooms if desired).  Saute until onions (and mushrooms) begin to soften and color (about 10 min).  Add the chopped pieces of salami and stir.  Add thyme and stir to coat onions.  Continue to cook until salami begins to soften (another 5 minutes).  Add the pumpkin puree, half & half, milk to reach a sauce consistency.  Sprinkle sage over sauce and stir.  Add grated Romano and stir.  Taste and add salt as needed.

Pour sauce over drained pasta and stir.  Serve with additional Romano and garnish with chopped parsley.  Enjoy!





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