Veg*n Cooking and Other Random Musings: Herbed Pumpkin Gnocchi

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Herbed Pumpkin Gnocchi

A week or so ago, Scott, from the cool CoMo blog Show-Me Eats, posted a recipe for Pumpkin Gnocchi that he and his son made. Both Brett and I absolutely love gnocchi, but the few times I have tried to make it, the result has been disaster. So I gave up really, we occasionally buy Rising Moon Organic's garlic and herb gnocchi, but it just isn't the same as homemade gnocchi, not to mention, I can get local potatoes from around here, and if a four year old can do it... :-) What kept me from making it sooner was the pumpkin in the recipe - I had to convince myself that it wouldn't taste funny. I can tell you - it does not taste funny at all and it was not a disaster. This meal was absolutely amazing and Brett and I will make a double batch next time so we can freeze some for really easy, tasty, and local dinners.

I changed the recipe a little bit for a couple of reasons. First off, there cheese called for in the recipe - obviously, my being allergic to dairy meant that I had to remove that, but I knew that if I simply removed it without adding some more flavor that it would be a little bland, so I worked in some herbs and a little more salt than I would have used had I been using cheese. The recipe was also in grams and such and since I am lazy and thus didn't want to get my scale out, I found rough equivalents and worked from there.

I went through a lot of trouble trying to decide what kind of sauce I wanted to serve this with. We ended up eating opting for St. Louis made Zia's pasta sauce, but I had also made a vegan chestnut cream sauce that I was planning on serving with the gnocchi initially. Until we tasted it that is... The chestnut cream sauce actually turned out pretty well - I think - if you like creamy sauces like alfredo. Neither Brett nor I can stand alfredo so when I tasted it after it had been blended and seasoned, I couldn't bring myself to eat it. I know my description of it makes it sound like it was very mouthwatering, but my tastes are just different. We both thought that if you like alfredo you would really dig on this sauce, and hey, it's made with lots of local ingredients and it's dairy free (though you could easily use real milk in it). If anyone wants the recipe, let me know and I will add it to the post.

All I will say is that if you like gnocchi, give this, or Scott's original recipe a try, YUM!

(You might notice that I didn't shape the gnocchi. I tried to at first, but I was just making a mess, getting frustrated, and along the way I realized that it really didn't matter all that much. I would like to get that down though; I didn't feel as though this looks like real gnocchi. :-))

The local booty legend (aka revealing my sources):
no asterisk = grocery store
+ = local produce from The Root Cellar
++ = The Peace Nook (will denote whether product is local or just from the Nook)
* = farmer's market
** = CSA
*** = Container or Community Garden
**** = the non-profit buying club, Blue Planet or Purcell Mountain Farms

Herbed Pumpkin Gnocchi
Recipe modified from here.

1 cup pumpkin puree +
1 1/2 cup mashed potatoes (see note below) +
2 cups (or more - see note below) semolina flour
4 cloves of garlic, roasted (see note below) +
3 tbsp olive oil + (not local)
1/2 tsp dried rosemary + (not local)
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried thyme


*I used 2 small yellow potatoes, peeled, boiled, and mashed, so it wasn't exactly measured.

*Use however much you need, but I found to get the dough to the consistency I needed required about 2 cups of flour.

*I mashed the roasted garlic cloves in with the potatoes.

Get a pot of salted water boiling.

Combine pumpkin, potatoes, oil, and seasonings.

Slowly add in the flour, using a fork or your hands, until well combined and you have a thick dough.

Break the large piece of dough into 4-6 smaller pieces, roll into balls.

Roll out into about 1" ropes of dough.

Cut pieces 1/2" in length.

If you want you can shape the dough all nice. I made a huge mess trying to do this, so we just boiled and ate 'em without shaping them and they were just fine.

Gently place in boiling water and let cook for 3-4 minutes or until the gnocchi have the texture you like.

Serve with pasta sauce, cream sauce, or flavored olive oil as suggested in the original recipe.

These were so very good, I can't wait to have them again!

Song of the Day: "The Devil's Chasing Me" - Reverend Horton Heat

'Til next time.


Heather @ SGF said...

Wow! does that look good! Right, so when are you moving in? Sooner would be better :) and I have bread rising as we speak...

Cookiemouse said...

I love gnocchi, and made of pumpkin? Even better!

Bianca said...

I adore gnocchi, but I've yet to try my hand at making it. This sounds delicious though. I love the idea of using pumpkin, and I love faux alfredo sauces, so I'm sure I'd like cashew cream. Any kind of nut cream (which sounds very dirty, btw) is fine by me.

srow77 said...

Glad it worked for ya, Jennifer. And the shaping thing is largely cosmetic. As long as you have some ridges/blemishes to which sauce can cling you should be fine.

jessy said...

dan's not one for an alfredo type sauce either, but i will totally e-mail you later for the vegan chestnut cream sauce if you don't mind! i loooove chestnuts and we have a bunch of organic ones that i could totally use.

i can't believe you made gnocchi! you're too awesome, Jennifer! thanks for the recipe & instructions! they're perfect! and i wouldn't have bothered to shape them either. i'm not very patient with things like that and i get super frustrated! ;) man, this sounds soooo awesome! totally printing off the recipe! i just need to stop being lazy and make it soon! mmmmmmmmmmmm!

Anonymous said...

I am impressed! I have tried making gnocchi in the past, and I think it is really hard! Forget about shaping it...I totally agree! Every time I have attempted to make it, I have made a HUGE mess! But yours look (and sound) good enough to make a mess for... :o)


Alice (in Veganland) said...

Gnocchi used to be my favorite food! Until you introduced me to vegan burritos, that is...
(By the way, I haven't had tacos yet because I'm still afraid they'll break and I'm still not quite sure how to eat them! silly me!)

miss v said...

ooo.. different. i like.

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Heather - You really drive a hard bargain! You are making Texas look better and better by the day. And then the comment about the bread rising...not fair...knees and resolve getting weak... ;-)

Cookiemouse - I concur!

Bianca - You should, I mean, if I can do it, you can definitely do it! The pumpkin added a nice flavor but didn't overpower the gnocchi which I really appreciated.

Hahaha, nut cream does sound a little dirty. That is, if your mind in in the gutter! (Kidding.) I will try to add that to the post sometime this weekend.

Srow77 - Thanks for the recipe, I really appreciated it, and I also appreciated the reminder about gnocchi, I needed to try it out again. That is nice to know about the shaping.

Jessy - As I mentioned to Bianca above, I will try too add the sauce recipe to this post sometime this weekend. Emailing probably isn't a bad idea though, I have a way of forgetting things.

I'm glad the instructions are alright. Sometimes certain things are really difficult to describe in terms of a process. I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets irritated with those sorts of things, shaping the gnocchi really isn't worth the effort.

I don't think you've been lazy lately, it sounds like you've been BUSY.

Courtney - It IS really hard. I had a lot easier of a time this go round though. I still made a huge mess in the kitchen making these (and it WAS worth the mess), but it didn't end in disaster, which justifies the difficulty in my mind.

Alice - I have to admit, I laughed out loud when I read your comment. I truly understand why it is confusing as to how you would eat a taco if you've never seen it done, it just seems so weird to me that someone has never seen someone else eat a taco! Not all of us live in a country attached to Mexico or come from a family that loves Mexican food though. You are too funny. I'm glad that you like vegan burritos. In my mind, you can do so many things with them. Stuff 'em with whatever you have around, top it with salsa, and you are good to go. (Well, perhaps don't stuff it with just anything lying around, not sure a shoe flavored burrito would be good, even WITH really spicy salsa. :-)

Miss V - These were really good, I appreciate Scott sharing the recipe so I could do my thing with it.

Anonymous said...

You are AMAZING!! So so impressed. And the idea of pumpkin makes it sound that much better. This is another one of those "fear to cook" foods for me, so hearing that you can really do it helps. How long did it take? Do you think they would freeze well?

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Living in a Local Zone - You are too kind, I thank Scott for posting the recipe, I would have never thought to use pumpkin in gnocchi. It was a "fear inducing food" for me too, I had tried to make it a few times, but it was awful, I was left with a mess, and usually a blob of inedible goo. Doing it this way was a lot easier and it seemed to work quite well.

I'm not entirely sure how long it took to make the gnocchi, I am guessing probably an hour, maybe a little less, I am kind of slow in the kitchen. Yes, you can freeze it. In fact, I halved my dough, formed a ball and froze it for later use. I'll just roll it out and cut it up once it is thawed. You could go ahead and get those steps out of the way and freeze it too.

Erin said...

Your gnocchi look great, congrats on the success!

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Erin - Thanks, it was really tasty. We are thawing out the second half of the dough tonight to have it again for dinner - wahoo!

pixiepine said...

This sounds really delicious, and you gotta love the Reverend!!

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Pixie Pine - Thanks, and you do gotta love the Rev. He usually comes to town around once a year, we try to catch him when we can, its always a fun show.