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Pumpkin Ravioli Dinner Party Menu Help

I'm having a few friends over. I plan on making Pumpkin Ravioli with some kind of brown butter/sage/pine nut sauce (still researching). For dessert I'm making a pear bruschetta with hazelnut cream (fabulous F&W recipe).

I need help picking the other course(s). It has to be vegetarian friendly. What kind of salads would go well for this seasonal inspired meal? Would soup be better, and maybe a green side dish (green beans?). Any suggestions would be welcome.

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  1. how about a butternut squash apple soup? it fits in quite nice this time of year.

    2 Replies
    1. re: davmar77

      I wouldn't do butternut squash with pumpkin on the same menu - too similar. I vote for a salad as well - shaved fennel is one of my faves, but the arugula suggested would be very nice too. I'd add a strong cheese/nuts to incorporate some protein as well.

      1. re: biondanonima

        I agree with the butternut squash so I suggest a light spinach salad with nuts, apples and goat cheese!

    2. I like the idea of a salad, as the butternut squash ravioli is a very filling main course.

      An arugula salad would be great as a starter. If you are seving the meal family style, it would go nicely with the ravioli also.

      I can post my recipe for an arugula salad with balsamic glazed cippolini onions. It would make a nice plated salad or family style dish. Usually I include pecans in the salad and either figs or shards of parmesan. Let me know if you're interested in the recipe.

      2 Replies
      1. re: cheesecake17

        Unless it's a cream sauce, which I don't think the OP is considering, I wouldn't call this a filling main course.
        I think if you're going to serve anything else, it should be fresh/uncooked to balance out the rest of the meal, so a salad sounds better than soup. Something arugula or spinach based with some sort of fruit/nut combo for tangyness/crunch.

        1. re: yanz

          To me, ravioli with or any pasta is a filling dish.

          The pumpkin/butternut squash raviolis that I've tasted had ricotta or goat cheese in the filling also.

      2. Approaching this from the Italian point of view, no side dish is appropriate, but you could follow the ravioli with a nice autumnal salad, maybe red and green lettuces, maybe with crumbled gorgonzola to make it more of a main course. No soup either, because the ravioli is already a primo piatto. You would want a sort of substantial antipasto, maybe fennel and orange salad, or grilled and marinated vegetables, possibly interspersed with some good canned or smoked or marinated fish, if they eat fish. I wouldn’t put sage in your sauce. Sage is good with something bland like ricotta, but the pumpkin should have a lot of flavor on its own. Just really good sweet butter and a ton of freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano is all you need.

        1 Reply
        1. A shaved fennel w/ citrus salad or shaved celery and red onion is very refreshing. I served a pumpkin risotto Sat and for a first course I served crostini with homemade ricotta and homemade roasted red and yellow peppers, it was very colorful and good. I followed with an argula salad.

          3 Replies
          1. re: cassoulady

            I'd do a nice bitter greens salad with a balsamic vinegarette and shaved parmesean and also maybe a hearty toasted grain tossed with some grilled vegetables like peppers, zucchini and grape tomatoes

            1. re: cassoulady

              Wow that sound fantastic, I'd love the recipe for your pumpkin risotto to try later.

              1. re: purplepamera

                Purplepamera, this is roughly what I do, although the only change is I gradually add the pumpkin puree, so with each ladel of stock, I add a little pumpkin : http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/pu...

            2. I agree with the salad comments. Maybe combine them all? LOL

              Fresh burrata over shaved fennel and arugula with a squeeze of blood orange and olive oil?

              1 Reply
              1. re: Novelli

                Where are you getting blood oranges right now?