Monday, February 11, 2008

The Gnocchi Diaries

I'm addicted to them. I've made my own, from potatoes, flour, and salt, and they were divine, but the vacuum-packed ones you can get at groceries now are very close to homemade. Who doesn't like a little dumpling now and then?

This soup was an improv that totally worked. The beans boost the protein, so if you're eating this for a meatless supper, add them. Cooked pasta or rice could definitely stand in for gnocchi.

Mushroom-Tomato Soup with Gnocchi
  • 1 cup chopped onion, white or yellow
  • 3 to 4 cups sliced mushrooms (I used a combo of shiitake and white button)
  • a little olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • a few tablespoons of dry red or white wine, or 2 tablespoons of wine vinegar
  • 1 14-oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained, or two chopped tomatoes
  • 3 cups chicken broth, vegetable broth, or water
  • 2 tablespoons prepared pesto, or some chopped basil and extra garlic
  • 1 15-oz. can white beans (optional), rinsed and drained
  • 1 package gnocchi
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese for serving
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the gnocchi.
  2. Heat a spoonful or two of olive oil in a deep saute pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onions, mushrooms, and thyme. Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Saute for about 8 minutes, until the veggies are getting soft. Add the garlic and saute for another 2 minutes, til the pan is almost dry.
  3. Add the wine and stir up all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the tomatoes, broth, and pesto, stir, and bring to a gentle simmer. At this point it can simmer for 20 minutes or so as the gnocchi cooks, but keep adding broth or water if it's starting to lose too much liquid.
  4. When the pot of water boils, add the gnocchi and cook until they float to the top, about 5 minutes. Drain and add to the mushroom mixture.
  5. Add the white beans, if using. Taste for salt and pepper. It might be a good idea to add another spoonful of pesto at this point.
  6. Serve in shallow bowls with Parmesan cheese grated over each serving.

Serves 3-4


Julie said...

That looks so comforting, I wish I had a hot bowl of that right now.

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