Agnolotti (AH-nyo-LOAT-tee) are little pasta dumplings from northern Italy. You can think of them as ravioli’s daintier cousin. Even if they are small in size, they are no less impressive in flavor—ours are filled with sweet butternut squash. Here, we’re preparing them the traditional way in a sage and brown butter sauce. The only thing that’s not old-fashioned about it is how it comes together with modern-day efficiency and swiftness.
Wash and dry all produce. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Halve, peel, and thinly slice shallot into strands (slice it from root end to stem end). Mince or grate garlic. Pick leaves from sage; discard stems. Roughly chop leaves.
Heat a large drizzle of olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add shallot and cook until starting to soften, 1-2 minutes. Add half the kale (use the rest as you like). Season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing, until tender, 4-6 minutes. Add garlic and a drizzle of olive oil. Toss until fragrant, 1 minute. Remove everything from pan and set aside.
Once water boils, add agnolotti to pot. Reduce heat slightly and bring water to a gentle boil. Cook until agnolotti are tender and float to the top, 3-5 minutes. Carefully scoop out and reserve 1 cup pasta cooking water, then drain.
Melt 2 TBSP butter in pan used for kale over medium heat. Add sage and pine nuts. Stir until butter is starting to brown and pine nuts are toasty, about 2 minutes.
Stir agnolotti, kale mixture, and ¼ cup pasta cooking water into pan. Increase heat to high and let bubble until liquid is reduced by half, 2-3 minutes. (TIP: Add a splash of remaining pasta water if sauce seems dry.) Gently stir in half the Parmesan. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Divide agnolotti mixture between plates. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan and serve.