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Butternut Squash Gnocchi with a Brown Butter Sage Sauce

As I travel along on my Italian cooking journey I decided to try and make gnocchi. It’s actually pretty easy. It does make a sticky dough that can test your nerves at times, but the result is a tender, fluffy gnocchi with a delicate flavor.

The first time I made gnocchi I made it with spinach and a lemon oil sauce that I had adapted from a cookbook. While I loved it, my kids don’t like anything green so I decided to try and see if I could create a butternut squash gnocchi instead. (Orange is a more acceptable color to eat according to both my toddlers and teenagers.)

First you need to roast the squash in the oven. I cheated and bought pre-cut cubes, but if you want to save money buy a small butternut squash, slice it in half and scoop out the seeds. Coat either the pre cut cubes or squash halves with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees until fork tender. (Cubes take about 25 minutes, halves about 1 hr).

Shred the roasted squash with a fork. Weigh out 250 grams and place in a large bowl. Add ricotta cheese, grated parmesan cheese, eggs, salt and flour. Mix well. A sticky dough will form.

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Heavily flour your counter and turn out the dough. Divide the dough into four sections. Take one section and form a ball. Coat the ball with a light layer of flour and roll into a 1 inch log.

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Slice the log into 1/4 inch pieces. Then, using a floured fork, press the tines into one side of the gnocchi to form grooves.

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Repeat with the remaining 3 sections.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the gnocchi in two batches. The gnocchi will float to the surface when done. Remove with a slotted spoon and place into a colander to completely drain.

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In a large frying pan melt 1/2 cup of butter and cook until it starts to turn a golden color. Add the chopped sage and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add the gnocchi into the pan and toss to coat. Cook until the gnocchi is hot again. Serve and enjoy!

Butternut Squash with a Brown Butter Sage Sauce
Ingredients
  • 1 lb butternut squash cubed or whole
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
Sauce:
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 4-6 leaves sage chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees

  2. If using a whole squash, cut in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds.

  3. Place squash on a greased baking sheet, brush on olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

  4. Cook until fork tender (approx. 25 minutes for cubes, 1 hr for halves)

  5. Mash and shred squash with a fork. Weigh out 250 grams and place in a large mixing bowl.

  6. Add remaining ingredients and mix well to form a sticky dough.

  7. Turn dough out onto a heavily floured surface. Divide dough into four equal sections.

  8. Take one dough section and form a ball. Coat ball with a light layer of flour.

  9. Roll ball into a 1 inch rope. Slice into 1/4 inch rounds.

  10. Using a floured fork, press the tines into one side of each gnocchi to form grooves.

  11. Repeat with the remaining 3 sections.

  12. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook gnocchi in two batches. They will float to the surface when done.

  13. Remove gnocchi with a slotted spoon and place in a colander to completely drain.

Sauce:
  1. In a large skillet, melt the butter and cook until it turns a golden color. 

  2. Add the sage and cook for another 2  minutes.

  3. Add the gnocchi into the skillet. Toss to coat. Cook till hot and serve.

 

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