Simple and Fresh Gnocchi

  • Recipe(s): Herby gnocchi with arugula and butter sauce (page 116)
  • Prep: Easy
  • Taste: Very Nice

One thing this year-long challenge has created is a fridge full of ingredients that do not go with most of our typical cooking, along with dry ingredients in the cupboards in the same vain. On the flip side, knowing how an ingredient pairs in a meal has increased our creativity when not using a recipe from the book. Tonight though, I chose a recipe that uses an ingredient we had bought for a previous dish (arugula – Crispy fragrant jumbo shrimp). I will be blogging about that dish as part of my, ‘catch up’ series, later.

You may be asking yourself, ‘how can the prep on this dish be easy when it requires fresh gnocchi?’ which is a valid question. The answer, ‘I bought it at Whole Foods.’ Yes this could be considered cheating, but work has been busy and time limited so, to make this dish on a week night required me to skip a step. I did splurge on the fresh gnocchi so….

The rest of this dish was very easy to put together. All you needed to do was melt some butter, add some vegetable stock, salt, pepper, lemon zest and fresh parmesan cheese. Very, very simple indeed.

I believe the simplicity of the ingredients actually made this dish one of the better ones that we have made thus far. I thought it would be heavy with the amount of butter used (9 tablespoons) but the lemon zest really worked to cut the richness. In fact, I would have added more lemon zest. The recipe called for 1 whole lemon and I probably would have gone for 2. The arugula also added a nice pepperiness to the final dish, which worked well with both the lemon and butter.

This dish ranks high on the taste to effort scale. It would probably be much lower had I made the gnocchi myself but by substituting fresh made pasta, by someone else, puts it very high on the scale. I would definitely make this dish again with the extra lemon zest I talked about earlier.

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