Yes, they look lovely don’t they? Beautiful butternut squash gnocchi tossed in an oil and thyme infusion sprinkled with lots of freshly grated Parmesan cheese… Bliss!
Except, it was not exactly easy and it was entirely all my fault. Chuck’s recipe was perfect. Totally my bad.
See there some recipes that are easy to divide in half which, as you know, I do all the time. This ended up not being one of those recipes. Remember how I made those Martha Stewart squash leaf canapes a while ago to celebrate fall? I used the top half of the squash for that recipe and then slow roasted the bottom half for this one.
In a food processor I added the roasted squash without the skins or seeds, 2 tbsp of olive oil, 1 beaten egg, 1/2 tsp of salt and 1 cup of flour.
The dough was way too wet! I mean it was just gloop. So I added at least 1/4 cup more flour. Chuck does say I might need more and he was right. I whizzed it up. Still gloop. So I added more.
It was supposed to be a soft texture but woah, I mean, so wet! As a result I completely covered it with flour so I could work with it.
I did manage to roll out the dough into a long 2 cm-wide strip and cut into 2 cm long pieces. Phew!
I put them on a well-floured baking tray but should have also used parchment. How could I have forgotten the parchment?
Chuck cooks his right away which I was going to do. I like to have my gnocchi with a sage butter which would go perfectly with the butternut but my sage had gone bad. I decided to just put the tray in my freezer until the next time I went to the store and picked some up.
I went and they did not have any! I picked up some thyme instead and decided to get a lot more groceries. I had put the tray in the fridge to slightly thaw but did not realize that some of my groceries were going to fall on top of the gnocchi. And flatten them! Turned them into a giant flat piece of pasta.
You can tell I was in a panic because I did not even photograph it! I tried to loosely shape each one into something that kind of resembled gnocchi and once again, put them on a floured parchment-free (damn it!) baking sheet and froze them.
Here they are mostly thawed. Not as pretty as they used to be but hopefully edible!
I added them to salted boiling water and in just a couple of minutes they started to float and were ready.
I added the fresh chopped thyme to some olive oil and melted butter for the sauce.
I tossed the gnocchi with the sauce and they ended up looking quite cute! But, they were under seasoned. Sigh…
Good thing that I had frozen some of the original gnocchi separately so I could try again and get some pretty photos and have them perfectly seasoned.
Woot! I did it! I added more Parmesan, salt and pepper and these were absolutely perfect. Nice and sweet from the butternut squash juxtaposed with the salty edge of Parm, finally, a home run.
I can not tell you how tempted I was to throw out the gnocchi dough, figuring it was over. I had ruined it. Which, technically I had but I made it work. Unlike a lot of things in life, food can be forgiving. There are creative ways to fix a disaster. Just don’t give up! And yes, I am also speaking to myself.