CRISPY GNOCCHI with KALE

9.24.2015



How is it fall already?? I'm sort of freaking out and loving it at the same time.

With the official start of the season, I can't get my mind off all the hearty dishes I'm dying to make and eat, but the heat down here is killing all of my soup, stew and braising ambitions. Along with heat inherently comes laziness and the thought of hanging out in the kitchen longer than necessary sounds like absolute torture.

Most of us strive to make delicious meals that are super fast to prep and cook (and clean!), especially when it comes to weeknight dinners. My arsenal isn't bad, but it's on repeat and I'm looking for variety and even quicker meals to add to the mix. An old episode of Nigella Bites came to mind (miss that show!) where she made Rapid Rostini using gnocchi. They are the most beautiful little caramelized potato nuggets and they're so addicting and delectable that I had to promise not to make them all the time.

As the cooking story goes, I forgot about them after that first time until the heat wave unlocked that part of my brain that stores old recipes. I mean seriously, I was sitting on the couch with an ice pack on my head when I pulled this one out. And while there is heat involved, it's so fast you barely have time to drink that first glass of wine you're hopefully drinking while cooking.


CRISPY GNOCCHI with KALE
serves 2 as a main, 4 as a side dish

4 Tbs olive oil, divided
12 oz uncooked gnocchi, fresh or packaged
3 garlic cloves, sliced
6 oz black kale, ribs removed and finely chopped
1/2 tsp kosher salt
black pepper
pinch of red chile flakes, if you wish
1/2 cup dry white wine or vegetable stock*
zest of 1 lemon, juice if you are using stock
2 Tbs pine nuts, lightly toasted
2 eggs
Pecorino Romano
*If you choose to use stock instead of wine, add a little bit of lemon juice to taste at the end of cooking the kale to add some acid.

Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat with 2 Tbs olive oil until hot and shimmery.
Place the gnocchi in one layer and fry for roughly 3-4 minutes each side until golden brown and crispy.
Meanwhile, bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Gently place the eggs inside and boil for exactly 6 minutes. Place in ice water to stop the cooking and thoroughly chill the eggs.
When the gnocchi is thoroughly browned, remove them from the pan and set aside. Loosely place some foil on top to keep the gnocchi warm.
Wipe out the skillet and heat the remaining 2 Tbs of olive oil over medium heat.
Add the garlic and heat just until they are fragrant, but not taking any color.
Add the kale, salt, pepper and chile flakes and cook for a minute or two.
Add the white wine, give the pan a stir, place a tight-fitting lid on top and reduce the heat to low.
Cook for 5-6 minutes until the kale is wilted and softened. Adjust the seasoning, if necessary.
While the kale cooks, you can peel the eggs.
To serve, scoop some crispy gnocchi in a bowl, mound some kale on top and sprinkle with some lemon zest, shaved Pecorino and a drizzle of olive oil.
Place half an egg on top and add a sprinkling of coarse salt.

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