The life and times of a gardener, a cook, and the journey in between...
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Gnocchi with Spinach, Ricotta, and Portobello Mushroom Sausage
For better or for worse, this whole growing our own vegetables thing has dramatically reduced my trips to the grocery store. I love that I can figure out a whole meal simply by walking outside. But, at some point, you need some basic ingredients to actually pull together a dinner. Tonight I opened up the cupboard to some rice, a granola bar, a few canned goods, a bag of pasta, and a bag of gnocchi. I turned to the fridge…butter, yogurt, salad dressing, some ricotta cheese, half a jar of pasta sauce…sigh. The freezer was equally disappointing with a few frozen vegetables, a couple of leftover sausages, and a carton of ice cream. In the past, I’d just shrug it off, make us some pasta, and call it a night. But, tonight, I couldn’t deny it any longer. I was having that dreaded, “what’s for dinner?” moment, and I could see it in Andrew’s eyes too, not boring pasta again, please not pasta again. Okay, okay, I’ll search my recipes and find something. I approached this task with skepticism, but sure enough, you really can make something out of nothing. I found this recipe on the BBC Good Food web site: www.bbcgoodfood.com, added some chicken portobello mushroom sausages and viola! It was delicious. I had to use frozen spinach rather than fresh, but it didn't seem to make much of a difference. If I made it again, I might throw in some roasted zucchini to add another dimension. But, if you are looking for a tasty and simple dinner, this is your recipe.
2 cups tomato basil sauce
1 Cup fresh spinach
1 package gnocchi, cooked
1/3 Cup ricotta cheese
2 chicken portobello mushroom sausages, grilled and sliced
parmesan cheese, grated
Preheat the broiler. Heat the tomato basil sauce in a sauce pan until warm. Add the spinach and simmer a couple minutes until the spinach wilts. Season the sauce if needed. (I usually add some Italian seasoning and garlic powder to sauce that comes out of a jar.) Meanwhile, cook the gnocchi as directed on the package and grill the sausages on the barbecue untill browned. Mix the gnocchi, sauce, and sausage and put into an oven-proof dish. Spoon small bits of ricotta cheese onto the top. Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and put in the broiler for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve immediately.