Sunday, January 23, 2011

eat; raw butternut pumpkin pappardelle

I decided to go on a raw diet this last week (well, I still had my espresso!!!) and will be posting the yumminess I discovered and 'cooked' up over the next few posts. My decision to go raw was to discover how to create great tasting meals that were more than simply tossing a salad. It was more challenging than I imagined and I used ingredients in ways I had never used before. I had some disasters but mainly successes. I don't have a dehydrator and the food processor in my share house is a little kids toy compared to the beast I have at home in Melbourne. I tried dehydrating using the oven, keeping the temperature as low as I could and the door of the oven ajar with a wooden spoon. It worked but I had to be home for at least 6 hours as I was not confident leaving the oven on. This was a problem.

There is an element of raw 'cooking' that is heavy and too flavourful for me.; things like a raw lasagna where more than one layer is a combination of too many flavours. I like the coupling of intense flavours and uncomplicated freshness, so I will attempt a raw lasagna at some stage using only one complicated layer and the rest using vegies in their raw state . 

I have decided to keep going with my raw adventures, keeping my diet at 80% raw which would mean I only have 4 cooked meals a week, or 8 meals at 80% raw. I imagine creating meals with cooked brown rice adding small chopped raw vegies or meals using beans and the rest of the ingredients raw. I will consume fully cooked meals but will keep them at a minimum or plan it that my night out with friends, will be my cooked meal. This will be an interesting adventure but I think will be a good way to cut out the 'I'm starving! I'm just going to shovel in something before I die!' action, which for most vegetarians, is normally carbohydrate rich foods.

Day 1 of my raw week was this amazing Butternut Pumpkin Pappardelle. Yes, I can hear you all...'WTF?!?!?! RAW PASTA?!?!?!' Especially as I AM THE PASTA QUEEN!!!!

But let me tell you, this recipe by one of my favourite raw chiefs, Russell James, is pretty fun to eat and has amazing flavours that will surprise any skeptic. Give it a go and see for yourself!!!!

This recipe serves 4.

What you need;
1/2 butternut pumpkin (squash). Try to
get one that is as straight as can be
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs olive oil
Cream sauce
1/2 cup raw chashews
1/4 cup raw pine nuts
1/2 cup water
1/2 clove of garlic
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp nutritional yeast
4 basil leaves
2 cups rocket (arugula)
3 Tbs shallots, sliced paper thin
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1/4 tsp salt

Start by soaking the cashew and pine nuts in filtered water for 2-4 hours. Once the time is up, drain and rinse, then put on a kitchen towel and dry by rolling a little.

If you have time, place the tomatoes into a very slow oven for 8 hours on a tray with a little oil.  Keep the door ajar with a wooden spoon. If you have a dehydrator, thats even better! Otherwise, fresh is fine.

I've taken pictures of the steps to cutting and preparing the pumpkin for shaving into pappardelle shaped pasta. 

Start by cutting the pumpkin in half, length wise.

 Turn the pumpkin on its cut side and slice length ways about 1 1/2cm.
Remove the skin with a potato peeler and cut out the seeded section.

 I've added this photo to show you how to 'shave' the pumpkin into strips. 
Try and slice all the way along in one big steady but slow action. 
You will have bits left over that are too hard to peel. 
 Save in a container for use with another recipe within a few days.
(I'll be posting a recipe within the next few weeks where I used the left over bits and the other half of pumpkin)

Vola! Your pasta is ready!!!! Add the lemon juice, olive oil and salt and toss so each piece is covered. Set aside.

For the cream sauce, simply add all the sauce ingredients into the food processor, except the basil leaves, and wizz away until smooth!!!! You may need to add more water until you get the consistency like a sauce. Add basil leaves towards the end and pulse to chop it up.

Back to the pappardelle.; add the rocket (arugula), shallots, salt, (leaving out the tomatoes until later) and mix well by hand. Add a handful onto each plate and pour a good amount of sauce onto each serving. This is simply for aesthetics as I think this looks better than serving it with the sauce mixed in. Now add the tomatoes onto each plate and serve.


Buon Apettito!


  1. Hello,

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  2. I came across your site from the foodieblogroll and I'd love to guide Foodista readers to your site. I hope you could add this butternut widget at the end of this post so we could add you in our list of food bloggers who blogged about recipes for butternut squash,Thanks!