Pasta with butternut squash, kale and brown butter and more recipes with fall vibes


By Emily Weinstein, The New York Times

The weather in New York flipped like a switch last week, and all of sudden we were in fall. I’m programmed to eat apples and winter squash as soon as the temperature drops, and this time was no exception: I made a crumble after I went apple picking and brought home a ridiculous (some might say crazy) number of apples.

Everyone in my home will be eating apples for weeks, whether they like it or not. If you, too, went apple picking or are going soon, there’s a good dinner recipe for you below.

1. Pasta With Butternut Squash, Kale and Brown Butter

This pantry pasta turns cold-weather basics — pasta, squash, kale and butter — into something luxurious and deeply flavored thanks to garam masala, the warming spice mix used in many South Asian dishes like kebabs and curries. But since this is a pantry pasta, you can substitute freely: Consider another nutty spice or two, like five spice, turmeric with chile powder, or cinnamon with crushed fennel seeds. Whole-wheat pasta stands up to the squash and spiced browned butter, but regular pasta will work as well. In place of squash, use chickpeas or carrot, and instead of kale, try something else green, like Brussels sprouts, Broccolini or mature spinach.

By Ali Slagle

Yield: 4 servings

Total time: 30 minutes


  • Kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
  • 1 tablespoon neutral oil, such as canola or grapeseed oil
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds butternut, honeynut, acorn or delicata squash, peeled if desired, halved, seeded and sliced 1/4-inch-thick crosswise
  • 1 pound whole-wheat spaghetti or linguine
  • 1 bunch Tuscan kale, ribs removed, leaves torn or coarsely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, sliced
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest plus 2 tablespoons juice (from 1 lemon), plus more juice as needed
  • Grated Parmesan, for serving


1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, in a large Dutch oven or skillet, heat half the oil over medium-high. Add half the squash in a single layer, season with salt and cook, undisturbed, until browned underneath, 3 to 5 minutes. Scoot the squash to the side of the pot, piling it up as needed to make room, then add the remaining oil. Arrange the remaining squash in a single layer, season with salt and cook until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. (If there’s not enough room for the second batch, remove the browned squash to a plate while you cook the rest.)

2. When the water comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook according to package directions until al dente. During the last 3 minutes of the cooking, add the kale. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water, then drain the pasta.

3. When all the squash is browned, return all the squash to the pot, if you set any aside while cooking the second batch. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the butter and stir with the squash until the butter is golden, nutty smelling and foaming, 1 to 4 minutes. (If you’re using a dark pot, it can be hard to tell if the butter’s browned, so spoon some of the butter on the squash to see if the butter’s speckled brown.) Turn off the heat, add the garam masala and red-pepper flakes, and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add 1 tablespoon of cold water (or an ice cube) and toss gently to stop the cooking, then set aside until the pasta is ready.

4. Add the pasta and 1/2 cup pasta water to the squash mixture. Set over low heat and toss gently until the pasta is glossed with sauce. (Some squash pieces might break apart, which can be a good thing: better disbursement through the pasta.) If the pasta looks dry, add more pasta water as needed. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon zest and juice. Season to taste with more lemon juice, red-pepper flakes and salt. Top servings with grated Parmesan.

2. One-Pan Chicken Thighs With Coconut Creamed Corn

If it’s possible to upstage crispy-skinned chicken thighs, the coconut creamed corn in this dish comes close. The sweetness of caramelized corn and coconut milk is balanced by the brightness of the ginger, chile, scallions and lime. As the corn simmers, the browned chicken thighs finish cooking right on top, so the flavors meld and deepen. It’s a complete summery meal in one skillet, although you can make it anytime. Just use frozen corn. Garnish it with cilantro, chives, fried shallots or coconut flakes, and serve it with a green side. If you feel like it, you could use shrimp instead of chicken.

By Ali Slagle

Yield: 4 servings

Total time: 35 minutes


  • 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (4 to 6 pieces)
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (from about 7 ears)
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts separated
  • 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated or chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely grated or chopped
  • 1 serrano chile or chipotle in adobo, finely chopped, or 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 1 (15-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges


1. Pat the chicken dry, and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle the olive oil in a large (12-inch) skillet. Add the thighs, skin-side down, and set over medium heat. (It’s OK if they’re slightly squeezed in the skillet; as the fat renders, they’ll shrink.) Cook, undisturbed, until the skin is deep golden brown, and the thighs release easily from the pan, about 15 minutes. (If your stove is getting splattered with oil, cover the skillet.) Transfer the chicken, skin-side up, to a plate. Reserve the skillet and fat.

2. Increase the heat to high, add the corn, scallion whites, ginger, garlic and serrano. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the corn starts to brown in spots, 2 to 3 minutes, adding an extra minute or two if using frozen corn.

3. Reduce heat to medium, add the coconut milk, scrape up any browned bits from the pan and season with salt and pepper. Put the chicken on top of the corn mixture, skin-side up. Simmer until the coconut milk is slightly thickened and the chicken is cooked through, 7 to 10 minutes. (If your corn has reduced too much before your chicken is done cooking, just add a few tablespoons of water or chicken stock.)

4. Serve with a squeeze of lime and reserved scallion greens on top.

3. Gochujang-Glazed Eggplant With Fried Scallions

Loosely inspired by the Korean banchan gaji bokkeum (stir-fried eggplant), this recipe keeps the eggplant in large pieces and sears it over high heat, yielding beautifully cooked flesh and still-violet skin. Though gaji bokkeum is traditionally soy sauce-based, my mother uses gochujang, the fermented Korean chile paste, for added sweetness and heat. The result is divine: As the sticky red sauce clings to the fried eggplant spears, it caramelizes in the heat of the pan and provides a glossy finish. The real star of this dish, though, is the scallion oil. The tangle of thinly sliced scallions crisps in olive oil, lending its oniony flavor to the oil, which is then used to cook the eggplant. This dish is salty, spicy and sweet — everything you want in a banchan — and tastes great with a bowl of fresh white rice.

By Eric Kim

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Total time: 45 minutes


  • 1 pound Asian eggplant (about 3 large; preferably Korean, or Chinese or Japanese), halved lengthwise and cut into 4- to 5-inch segments
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons gochujang
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 packed teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 scallions, trimmed, cut into 3-inch segments, then very thinly sliced lengthwise, white and green parts separated


1. Place the eggplant in a colander set inside a large bowl or the sink. Sprinkle with the salt, toss to combine and let sit for 30 minutes to remove excess moisture.

2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, add the gochujang, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil and garlic. Whisk to combine, then set aside.


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