I have a new found respect for pumpkin.
And that's saying a lot for someone who doesn't really like pumpkin pie.
I recently discovered a group of bloggers in my area who meet once a month. I have never met another food blogger, face to face. That I know of. (or that I can remember) Do you know how excited I was to attend my first meeting...and meet real live people who are just as obsessed with food and pictures and writing about it all, as I am?
Oh man...I felt like I was going to my first ever party.
Then I found out that everyone needed to bring a dish.
Ok, that's cool.
A pumpkin dish.
Then the nerves set it. What can I bring that will live up to whatever expectations other bloggers have? I certainly don't want to bring the same dish as someone else. I considered my Pumpkin Cheesecake but pushed it to the back of my mind for a bit. Then decided to experiment and see what my other options were.
One of the many dishes that I considered and reviewed was this Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo. Although I was skeptical. I mean...I imagined pumpkin pie tossed with tortellini. Not a good visual, or mental taste test. Upon noticing that it only contained 1/2 cup of pumpkin...my reservations lifted a bit and I went for. As in...test run for dinner.
I wonder if my family realize how often they're used as guinea pigs. Or if they care.
(do you see how few ingredients there are?!)
Tortellini with Pumpkin Alfredo Sauce
inspired by Food Network
2 9oz packages of cheese tortellini (I only used a 14oz package. worked fine)
1 TB butter
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
Pinch of nutmeg (freshly ground if you have it)
1 1/4 cup heavy cream (ya ya, I used whipping cream)
1/4 parmesan cheese plus more for garnish
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped sage for garnish (ooptional)
Cook the tortellini according to package directions.
In a skillet, over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the shallots. Cook and stir until tender, about 2 minutes. Add the pumpkin and nutmeg and continue cooking for another minute, stirring constantly.
Pour in the cream, stirring to blend and bring to a low boil.
While still stirring, reduce heat and continue to cook for another 5 minutes or until slightly thick. Stir in the cheese and cook for another minute, until thick. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the tortellini and garnish with cheese and sage if desired.
Oh man...this dish is subtle in flavor yet rich. Each bite leaves you wanting more. It's so good that I made it again. Less than a week later.
Another bonus: you know how you have that little bit of pumpkin puree leftover from making all your holiday desserts? Well this is the perfect dish for using that up.
But I did not bring this to the food blogger meeting.
Not because it wasn't amazing and delicious. Not because it would shame me in any shape or form.
I didn't bring it because....I had a slight hangover and it didn't sound like it would be very good for brunch. So I brought pumpkin cheesecake which I had made the day before (as a backup plan...just in case).
Thank god no one else brought the same thing. And yes...the food was amazing, as one would expect. I just wish I could've fit everything on the table is this one photo.