Rigatoni with Roasted Butternut Squash and Pancetta

by Jana Harvey on April 13, 2011

One 1 3/4-lb butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice (2 cups)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 lb. rigatoni
3 oz thickly slice pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 shallots, thinly sliced
12 sage leaves, torn
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese, plus more for serving

Preheat the oven to 425º. On a medium, rimmed baking sheet, toss the squash with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Roast for 15 minutes, tossing once, until browned and tender; season with salt. Meanwhile, in a pot of boiling salted water, cook the rigatoni until just al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water. Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet. Add the pancetta and cook over moderate heat until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the shallots, sage, crushed red pepper and a generous pinch of black pepper and cook until the shallots are soft, about 4 minutes. Add the squash, rigatoni and the reserved cooking water and cook over moderate heat, tossing gently, until the sauce is thickened and the pasta is al dente, 2 to 3 minutes; season with salt. Stir in the 1/2 cup of Pecorino. Serve the pasta in deep bowls, passing extra pecorino at the table.

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