Before you read this, you should check out my guest post at WBACC - Wanna Be a Country Cleaver!
I cheat with gnocchi. Truth: I've never made gnocchi. But I love it. I've always wanted to make it. But let's be honest - after you've been working for 9 hours, have a hungry husband, and crying kitties, who wants to make gnocchi from scratch? Okay, another truth - sometimes I do crazy things. Gnocchi is not a crazy thing that I've done... I want to. Monday night is not the night. If it is your night to do crazy things like make gnocchi from scratch, then you deserve a medal. And then a foot rub and a nap. Because DANG.
Back to my story - I also like to take boring things from a jar, and make them taste-tacular by adding fresh ingredients. Because we're busy people! So I made a Bistro Gnocchi Bake! It dirtied two pans - but with a little patience, you could easily do it in one. And it took about 45 minutes (because there was some chopping and bake time).
- 1 lb sausage (I used spicy chicken sausage - low fat!)
- 1/2 onion (or 1 large shallot) minced
- 3-4 stalks of celery, chopped
- 8 oz mushrooms, rough chopped
- 1 package of gnocchi (or, if you're like, super woman, a batch of homemade stuff)
- Jar of your favorite sauce (because we're being realistic here)
- Ricotta and/or shredded cheese for the finale
Start by putting a large pot to boil water for gnocchi. (If you are set on using one pan, cook the gnocchi completely in the pot, then set aside in the baking dish and use the large pot for the saucey goodness). Next - start browning the meat. When it's done, remove from pan (put on a plate) but leave the juice in the pan - then you don't have to add oil for the veggies! In the hot, juicy pan (um... I'm not sure where this is going... oh! Now I remember)... In the hot pan, toss in garlic, onion, and celery. Salt it - because it's a good thing.
Remove the pretty veggies, and then quick sautee the mushrooms (I like mine firm because of the bake time, but you can adjust to your preference).
Is the water boiling yet? (wait, which order did you do?) If it is, add the gnocchi. Watch carefully - cook it just under the full time. Drain and add to a baking pan.
In the veggie pan, toss in your jar of sauce. Let it scrape up all the tasty bits from the veggies and meat. Better already! Then add back in the meat and all the veggies...
This is where my stove got
wrecked a little messy because I underestimated my pan size... still good! Heat everything thoroughly. Season to taste with salt, pepper, any fresh herbs that you have growing on your porch... I have none. But it was still good!! Now pour this tasty, tasty sauce all over the anxiously waiting gnocchi, and then dollop with some ricotta.
Bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes. And then, because your whole place will smell amazing, enjoy!!
*Chef's note: There are two of us. Based on the left-over count, I think this serves about 6 people*