Gnocchi are typically associated with northern Italian cooking, but several regions in Italy lay claim to them, and they are generally found all over Italy in many recipes. Gnocchi are small dumplings usually made from potatoes, flour, eggs and cheese. The region they come from will determine the sauce that accompanies them. This hybrid gnocchi dish we created is a nod to both Tuscany and northern Italy. It’s a filling, rustic dish full of flavor and texture, and the vegetables can be changed up depending on the time of year. Most gnocchi recipes call for boiling them, much like pasta. However, we use shelf-stable packaged gnocchi that can be toasted on the stove to create a nice crust on the outside while keeping a soft pillowy interior. You can find gnocchi in the pasta aisle, but gnocchi from the freezer section work just as well. The roasted vegetables, cheese and touch of cream make this a hearty main dish that is perfect for a supper on a cool fall night.
2 cups small zucchini, cut into ½-inch thick slices (approximately 2 small zucchinis)
1 (16-ounce) package of shelf-stable, refrigerated or frozen gnocchi
1 cup heavy cream
¼ teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons fresh chopped flat leaf parsley
Salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
1. Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with foil.
2. Place the vegetables into a large mixing bowl and toss them with the olive oil, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, kosher salt and grated Parmesan cheese.
3. Arrange the seasoned vegetables in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets and roast for 6 to 7 minutes.
4.Gently stir the vegetables and continue roasting for another 4 to 5 minutes, or until they are golden brown.
5. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and melt the butter. Add the
gnocchi, toss them around in the melted butter, and then arrange them in a single layer. Cook without stirring for 2 minutes. Gently toss the gnocchi again and continue cooking another 2 to 4 minutes or until they become crisp and golden.
6. Reduce the heat to medium, add in the cream and fold in the roasted fall vegetables. Sprinkle in the thyme and parsley, and season with a little salt and pepper. Serve with extra grated Parmesan cheese.
Editor’s note: If using frozen gnocchi, allow them to thaw 5 minutes before you toast them.
This article was originally published in the October 2021 issue of 225 magazine.