Monday, November 4, 2013
My kitchen broke. The dog ate my cookbooks... Those are about the best excuses I can come up with for my lengthy absence from this blog that was once such a big part of my life. They're not even good excuses. Heck, I don't even have a dog (if I did, my husband would probably be pretty happy if he ate a few of my cookbooks). But a lot has happened since my last post in April. My tiny one turned one... and started sleeping through the night (most of the time). My job changed. Then changed again. My manager changed. My husband's job changed.
Through it all, I have been cooking - a lot. Fortunately we are moving past the phase of baby food and I can serve one meal to my whole family at least a few times a week. This may sound ridiculous to the childless, but all you moms know exactly how monumental this is. Last night's dinner was Polish: kielbasa, pierogies and sauerkraut. And you know what?? Both kids ate kielbasa and pierogies. It made my day. These are the small victories that mean so much to working moms...
I have a stockpile of photos and recipes from the last few months, so it's time to get back to blogging. This one is a highlight - from a cookbook Mom gave me a few months back...
Note well: the gnocchi need to be started a day ahead so plan accordingly!
Gnocchi with sausage and leeks
Adapted from Fabio's Italian Kitchen by Fabio Viviani
1 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
6-8 Sweet Italian sausages
1 c. dry white wine
2 Tbsp. olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 recipe potato-ricotta gnocchi (follows)
Good quality EVOO for drizzling
Preheat oven to 375F.
Clean the leeks well and slice pale green and white parts into thin rounds.
Heat the butter in a saute pan over medium heat and brown the sausages on all sides. Add the wine and reduce. While the wine is reducing, toss the leeks with the olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Spread the on a baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes.
Once the wine has reduced and leeks are roasted, drop gnocchi in a pot of salted boiling water. Remove gnocchi as soon as the first ones rise to the top. Add to the pan with the sausage mixture and toss to coat. Transfer to a serving platter and top with the leeks, a drizzle of good Extra-virgin olive oil and some shaved Parmesan.
6 medium baking potatoes
1/2 a whole nutmeg, grated (I used less!)
1 Tbsp. salt, plus pepper to taste
1 egg yolk
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup semolina flour
2 cups flour
Preheat oven to 425F.
Bake the potatoes for an hour until they are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Cool for a couple hours then scoop out the insides. Mash until very smooth using a fork or potato ricer.
Add the nutmeg, salt, pepper to taste, egg yolk and ricotta. Mix to combin and refrigerate overnight, covered.
The next day, spread the semolina in an even layer on a baking tray.
Place potato mixture in the bowl of a stand mixer and add the flour on low-medium speed. Once the mixture has come together, remove it from the bowl and cut into fist-sized pieces.
Roll each ball into a cigar shape and cut into 1-inch pieces. Place on the baking tray and then refrigerate for 20-30 minutes to set. Cook as noted in recipe above.