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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Pumpkin Sage Cream Sauce

For the last several years, I have made some kind of pasta using this Pumpkin Sage Cream sauce recipe except this Thanksgiving where I decided to make soup as a starter instead. Well, I thought I was "ok" with it until I kept seeing cans of organic pumpkin in the supermarket on sale and REALLY inexpensive. So I decided I'd make this sauce, even if it wasn't a holiday. Isn't it funny how we only want to eat certain foods during a specific time of year? Why not treat yourself year-round, as long as it's in moderation of course since this isn't the healthiest recipe to eat!  

I had never made sweet potato gnocchi before, only the regular potato kind so when I decided to make this recipe this past weekend, I wanted to try and make it a little more healthy by using whole wheat flour. MISTAKE and kitchen experiment gone awry! Though it looked good, I had to add so much flour to make the dough non-sticky that it tasted horrible. SO, back to the drawing board. I tried it again, this time using all-purpose flour only and these are the gnocchi I know and love! The combination of the sweet potatoes, pumpkin and fresh sage flooded my brain with memories of fall, even though it was 20 something degrees outside, and the taste was even better than a regular pasta or ravioli, which is how I've made this before. 

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Pumpkin Sage Cream Sauce

For the Gnocchi:
2 Medium Sized SweetPotatoes
1 Egg, beaten
1 1/2-2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt
1c. Prepared Pumpkin Sage Cream Sauce (see recipe below)

Boil the potatoes with the skins on until they are fork tender. Do not cool the potatoes. Remove from the hot water one at a time, peel off the skins and using the tines from the back of a fork, gently mash the potatoes. Repeat for each potato, add to a bowl, then let cool 10-15 minutes. Form the potatoes into a ball shape, form a well and add in the egg and salt. Next add 1 cup of the flour and gently keep folding all of the ingredients together until it is all incorporated. The dough shouldn't be too sticky. If it is, gradually add more flour as needed. Cut into ten pieces. Take one of the pieces and turn it onto a floured board. Gently roll lengthwise forming a log shape the thickness of your thumb. From there, cut into eight pieces (about the size of the tip of your thumb to the first joint). Gently using the back of the fork, make an indentation on the top. Repeat for all ten segments of dough. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Gently drop in the Gnocchi. They are done when they start floating, approximately 3-5 minutes. Drain the water and put the Gnocchi in a serving bowl. Heat the sauce, pour over the Gnocchi and gently mix together. Serves 4.

*If you aren't going to cook them right away, place them in a single layer on a floured cookie sheet in the refrigerator up to 24 hours ahead of time.

Pumpkin Sage Cream Sauce
2 tbsp. Butter
2 tbsp. Fresh Sage, chopped
1-7 oz. Canned Pumpkin
1 pt. Heavy Cream
¼ c. Pecorino Romano Cheese, grated

Melt butter in a saucepan and add sage; simmer 1 minute allowing butter to turn slightly brown. Add pumpkin, heavy cream and cheese. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Makes 2 cups.


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