#HolidayTableTalk: Ryan Scott | Blog | Holiday Recipes

Butternut squash baked zitiChef Scott credits his mom with instilling in him a love and passion for food.  “Whether it’s at home or in front of a live audience, my mom is still my favorite cooking partner.  I make the recipes that she taught me as a kid growing up.”  Squash is a fall favorite for recipes; try this great twist on a traditional baked ziti.

 

Chicken Butternut Squash Baked Ziti

Ingredients:

  • 32 ounce carton butternut squash soup
  • 3 cups cooked rigatoni
  • 1 pound pre-roasted chicken, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 cup of ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 15 sage leaves

Preparation:

  • Preheat oven to 350° F.
  • In a medium pot over medium heat, bring butternut squash to a boil.  Lower heat and reduce sauce, about 15 minutes.
  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, add olive oil and saute onion and garlic until translucent and not browned.  Stir in Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes and chicken, for 2 minutes.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine Parmesan and breadcrumbs together.
  • In a 13 x 9 baking dish, mix butternut squash sauce, 1/2 of ricotta cheese, rigatoni, and chicken until just combined.  Dot with remaining ricotta and spread an even layer of Parmesan bread crumbs over top.
  • Bake until cheese is melted through and breadcrumbs are golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan over medium high heat.  Crisp sage leaves for about 8 minutes and remove with slotted spoon onto a paper towel lined plate.  Sprinkle on top of baked ziti.