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Cleaning Out The Fridge Gnocchi

August 14, 2011

I got a late start today.

My body begged me to stay in bed.  I didn’t put up a fight.

Finally, I got up, had my coffee, took a shower and got dressed for the day.

I decided to be at least a little productive today.  So I put a load of laundry in.

Then I decided to take inventory of the food in my fridge to see what I needed to use up.

It was obvious I had my work cut out for me.  I had tons of leftovers in tupperware containers inhabiting my shelves.

So I started to think of my fridge as a mystery basket from “Chopped”.

Butternut squash.  Potato.  Ricotta cheese.  Egg.  Parmesan cheese.

Hmm.

What I came up with was pretty darn tasty.

“Cleaning out the Fridge Gnocchi”

It should be noted I did not measure a thing for this dinner.  I just added things until it felt right.

That probably makes no sense to anyone but me.

Anyways, I started by putting the ricotta cheese [promise a post next week about this] into a bowl.

  

  To the cheese I added one egg.

I mashed up the leftover butternut squash and potato that I had and then added that to the bowl.

  

Then I grated some parmesan cheese into the mix too.

I mixed all of that together until it was incorporated pretty well.

  

Then I added some flour into the bowl.

I wasn’t sure how much flour I was going to need, so I started with 1/2 cup and worked my way up until it felt right.

From what I understand from the few times I’ve made gnocchi, is that you know the dough is ready when it’s “tacky”.  Meaning you want it to be sticky, but not too sticky where it’s getting stuck in between your fingers.

Make sense?

I chilled the gnocchi dough for about 20 minutes and then I floured a board and dumped some of the dough out on it.

I gently rolled out the dough into a rope, sprinkling more flour if needed.

Then I cut them into little square/rectangles.

You could leave them just like that, as little nuggets if you wanted to.

But I wanted more.

There’s a few methods to forming gnocchi.  You can “thumb” them or “fork” them.

I wanted to fork them.

All that means is that you roll the gnocchi nuggets along the tines of the fork to create ridges.

As I “forked” them, I placed them on a parchment lined baking sheet, lightly dusted with flour.

Don’t they look so cute?

Once I was finished “forking”, I placed the whole tray in the freezer until I was ready for dinner.

[[...Cue Jeopardy theme song...]]

Once it was time for dinner, I put a pot of salted water on the stove until it came up to a boil.

Then I added the frozen gnocchi to the pot.

You know the gnocchi is done when the float to the top.

It literally takes a minute or so, if that.

Side note:  While the gnocchi was cooking I melted some butter in a saute pan and browned it.

Once they floated I transferred them [via spider] to the pan with the brown butter.

I tossed the gnocchi in the pan with the butter and added some frozen peas and walnuts to it as well.

I just tossed it all together until the peas thawed and walnut toasted a little.

Then I dumped it into a bowl and topped it with some fresh herbs and more parmesan cheese.

Yum!

You know for being what it was, these guys were actually pretty good.

Were they my best gnocchi?

No, but they were tasty for sure.

I was wishing that I had sage leaves though.  Fried sage leaves, butternut squash, brown butter = Trifecta.

A small bowl of these go a long way, as they are super rich with the ricotta and butter.

So I put the other half of the gnocchi is a plastic bag and kept them in the freezer for a later date.

Maybe when I have sage leaves. :-)

All in all I’m pretty satisfied with how my spontaneous, mystery basket of a dinner turned out.

I’m sure the “Chopped” judges would have given me an “A” for creativity :-)

Have a good night!!

Vanessa

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 16, 2011 7:55 pm

    So when I read the title of this post, I expected to see you using random ingredients from you fridge to top some bertolli gnocchi… CLEARLY I forgot whose blog I was reading. You are awesome.

    • August 17, 2011 12:01 am

      Hahaha!! Trust me I even surprised myself here. As I was making this gnocchi concoction, I was sure that it would fail. Fail it did not. I love when that happens. :-)

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