Butternut Squash Cappellacci di Zucca
Butternut Squash Cappellacci di Zucca is a wonderful, traditional Italian pasta dish with a fall flair. Roasted butternut squash is wrapped in homemade pasta and served with crispy sage and brown butter sauce along with my addition, a bit of marinara sauce
This butternut squash pasta dish is chock full of all the amazing flavors of fall/autumn all rolled into tiny little packages! For me, this is the trifecta of taste sensation, sweet butternut squash, nutty brown butter and earthy crispy sage. Once you make it, your taste buds will thank me!
This is one of my all time fall/autumn Italian pasta dishes that originates from Ferrara in the Northern Italy region of Emilia-Romagna (way up at the top of “the boot”, just south of Milan).
Making homemade pasta
I like to make my own pasta for this dish, but if you can find sheets of ready made pasta dough, by all means use that.
But… If you’ve never made your own pasta dough and have always wanted to try, consider this the time to give it a shot! I have a step by step video showing how easy it can be – and it is much easier than you might think. Pasta made at home with loving care is so much better than store bought and actually cooks up very quickly. You’ll feel like a super hero in your kitchen!
What does Cappellacci mean?
Cappellacci (roughly translated to bad/ugly hats in Italian) are folded in the traditional way to resemble an Italian nun’s headwear.
These little hats are made in a similar fashion to ravioli and tortellini and are filled with zucca violina (butternut squash). ‘Zucca’ being the general Italian term for any squash, including pumpkin.
My favorite way to serve Butternut Squash Cappellacci di Zucca is the exact same way I serve my Pumpkin Ravioli, with crispy sage, butter and just a touch of homemade marinara sauce (< click for link). The sauce helps cut through the richness of the filling and butter.
In Italy, all stuffed pastas have different names and they are all distinguished by the shape that they are ultimately folded into. Cappellacci pasta is similar to tortellini (or tortelloni) except tortellini start with a round piece of dough and cappellacci start with square pieces of dough.
Cutting a butternut squash
Because squash is very hard when raw, cutting up any squash can be difficult and dangerous so be careful and make sure you have a sharp knife and keep track of each cut carefully.
As an easier alternative, you can cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds and roast each half on a baking sheet rubbed with oil, dried sage, salt and pepper (flesh-side up) at 400°F/200°C for 50-60 minutes until fork tender.
Preparing the butternut squash filling
To prepare the filling, I prefer to cut the butternut squash into cubes first, then roast them up until they’re tender with salt, pepper and dried sage.
If you’ve made this Butternut Squash Cappellacci di Zucca, please give a star rating in the recipe. Or, if you have a question or comment, you can leave that below.