02 September 2016

Roasted gnocchi: variations on a theme

You know those non-refrigerated packages of gnocchi you see at the grocery store, the ones you think you're too good to buy? (I actually just wonder how they can last like that.)  They make a great "emergency" staple, as in: "I don't want to wait very long, but I do want a pasta dish", or "I just invited everyone from the bar back to my house and I have no snacks to put before them". For the meal, see below.  You could do it with any vegetables you have on hand. As an appetizer, simply toss the gnocchi by itself with some olive oil (don't be stingy) and coarse salt and broil; in about 10 minutes, you will have puffy, golden, greasy little baked potatoes to soak up all the wine in your tummy.  Buy a package or two when they're on sale, then keep them in the pantry until needed. Because it looks like they last almost indefinitely in their original wrapping (yikes).

Roasted Gnocchi

Serves 4

Olive oil
1 package gnocchi
1 small bell pepper, cut into thin strips and then chopped into 1” pieces
½ yellow onion, thinly sliced
2 cups packed kale, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and red pepper flakes to taste

In a large bowl, toss the gnocchi, bell pepper, and onion with about a tablespoon of olive oil and a teaspoon or so of the kosher salt (large flake is nice). Spread in an even layer onto a baking sheet or other broiler-proof pan and cook under the broiler on “high”, stirring once, until gnocchi is looking soft and puffy and the vegetables are soft.  This should take no more than 10 minutes.

While you wait, toss the kale in the bowl with the balsamic vinegar. When ready, add the kale to the gnocchi mixture and give it a stir. Broil for another 5 minutes or so, until the kale is getting crisp in some places and there are some brown spots on the gnocchi.  You can keep stirring and broiling if you want things to be more evenly crisp, but I like the variety.

Season with red pepper flakes and more salt, if necessary. Eat.

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