Gnocchi with Brown Butter, Basil and Blistered Tomatoes

gnocchi with brown butter, basil and tomato

This is a summertime version of a brown butter sauce, no sage leaves used here, I’ll save that for the fall, instead I’m using fresh basil leaves tossed into hot, nutty tasting browned butter, just until crisp, then blistered cherry tomatoes complete with their juice get stirred in and around to complete the sauce.

It’s a killer combination, so quick and easy to make and the perfect flavor profile to top off your summertime pasta dishes.

frozen ricotta gnocchi

I for one love it with gnocchi, I’m partial to ricotta gnocchi, it’s my favorite, little fluffy pillows of cheese that melt in your mouth!

I normally make my own (just omit the kale if you want them plain in the link I’ve given you)  but once in a while I’ll buy some from my favorite Italian market and keep a few bags handy in the freezer, it makes for a very quick dinner that I can whip up in no time.

This sauce is also amazing spooned over cheese ravioli, if you’re not a gnocchi fan.

gnocchi with brown butter, basil and tomato

Very simple components, the only thing you have to do is roast the cherry tomatoes ahead of time and have them ready to go.

brown butter and basil

The basil leaves get frizzled and the juice of the tomatoes mingle nicely with the browned butter.

brown butter, basil and blistered tomatoesgnocchi brown butter, basil and tomatoes

Top it off with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano, I’m serious, every bite is to die for!

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Gnocchi with Brown Butter, Basil and Blistered Tomatoes
 
The perfect summertime brown butter sauce to spoon over your pasta, using basil and blistered tomatoes!
Author:
Ingredients
  • 12 oz.to 1 lb of cooked ricotta gnocchi, with or without spinach, kale, or swiss chard added to the recipe,or just straight up plain or even cooked ravioli
  • 1 pint of colored cherry tomatoes, sliced in half and pre-roasted plus olive oil
  • ½ stick of unsalted butter
  • a good handful of fresh basil leaves
  • Grated parmesan for finishing
Instructions
  1. Roast the tomatoes beforehand, you can even do it a few days ahead and leave them in the fridge.
  2. Place sliced cherry tomatoes on a foil rimmed sheet pan, drizzle generously with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast at 375 until they blister and juices start to flow.
  3. Remove tomatoes and place into a bowl making sure to save and scrape all juices off the foil.
  4. Get your water boiling for the pasta, gnocchi takes only about 3 minutes, In the meantime start making your sauce.
  5. In a large skillet on top of stove heat butter on medium high until golden and starts to foam, toss in the basil leaves, let them frizzle for a second or two then stir in tomatoes and shut off the heat.
  6. Get your pasta into the pot, when gnocchi rise to the top gently scoop them out with a hand strainer and place them carefully into the skillet, spoon and make sure the sauce is all over them.
  7. Finish with the grated Parmigiano Reggiano.

 

 

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Happy Fourth of July!

4th of July grillingsummer side salads

Have a safe and enjoyable weekend with good food, family and friends!

For a little inspiration, here’s a visual of summertime eats that I’ve made throughout the years, most recipes are found in my recipe index, feel free to email me if you want one in particular.

 

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Fresh Watermelon Cake

watermelon cake

Here’s a fun and creative way to serve up your next watermelon, carve it into a “cake”!

Who doesn’t love watermelon, it’s a summer staple usually always present at cookouts and parties. This “cake” is made with sweet refreshing watermelon that has been carved and shaped into a cake, it gets frosted with fresh whipped cream and is decorated with fresh summer berries, this could be the perfect red, white and blue cake for your Fourth of July party.

I’ve seen this done online and I couldn’t wait to try it myself, I was skeptical about putting the cream on a wet surface but all you do is pat the melon down really good with paper towels after it’s cut, and I was pleasantly surprised how easy and quick it was to put it all together.

I actually made this early in the morning, had it all frosted and garnished, stuck it in my fridge and pulled it out later in the evening and it was flawless, everything stayed in tact, in fact the cream set up so nice and firm and it was so easy to cut into nice wedges, even leftovers the next day were perfect!

watermelon

Find yourself a nice round seedless watermelon, you’re going to be cutting the top and bottom off so pick a size according to how many guests you’ll be serving.

ingredients for watermelon cake

The first thing I recommend doing is whipping your cream, you want very stiff peaks and then refrigerate it, get it nice and cold. Have all your berries washed and ready to go. You can garnish your “cake” with whatever you want, berries, nuts, sprinkles, slivered almonds, coconut or other fruit of your choice, make it your own and be creative!

watermelon cake

The trimming was easier than I thought, after you remove the top and bottom stand it upright and start slicing the dark outer green rind off all the way around and make sure you see none of the light green rind underneath showing either, take your time and start trimming and shaping it to look like a cake.

watermelon cake

When you’re done trimming it put it on top of the platter you’ll be serving it on, don’t worry it doesn’t have to be perfectly shaped.

watermelon cake

The whipped cream will hide all the imperfections and so will all your added fruit and garnishes.

watermelon cake

It’s unexpected, impressive and a guaranteed show stopper when you bring it out to the table and no baking required!

Happy Summer and Happy 4th!

Fresh Watermelon Cake
 
Refreshing, unexpected and a beautiful way to serve a watermelon, transformed to look like a cake. It's healthy and delicious too!
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 whole seedless watermelon
  • 3 cups of heavy whipping cream ( you'll probably have some extra)
  • ½ teaspoon of vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons of confectioners sugar or other sweetener like stevia
  • assorted fresh berries and other garnishes of your choice like nuts, sliced almonds, coconut, sprinkles, etc.
Instructions
  1. First whip your cream with the confectioners sugar and vanilla, whip until you get nice stiff peeks, then refrigerate bowl.
  2. Wash and dry the whole watermelon.
  3. With a sharp knife slice the top and bottom off.
  4. Standing upright begin removing the dark green rind all around.
  5. Keep trimming the sides removing the light green rind underneath and trimming it into a nice cylinder shape.
  6. Wipe and pat dry the cylinder with paper towels to remove excess moisture.
  7. Place shaped and patted dry melon on serving platter.
  8. Spread cold whipped cream all over with a rubber spatula, top and sides.
  9. Garnish with berries or other things of your choice.
  10. At this point you can refrigerate it until ready to cut. I placed the whole platter into my fridge and didn't cover it, but if you had a cake plate topper that would fit over the top, that would be fine too but not necessary.
  11. If you have some of the "cake"remaining after cutting just refrigerate soon after so the whipped cream doesn't melt down, especially on a hot day.

 

 

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