Weekend comfort food: Gnocchi With Pomodoro Sauce

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There’s nothing that tops the deliciousness of a gooey, cheesy, baked pasta dish — especially now that winter weather is fully upon us. Last Sunday I tested this Gnocci with Pomodoro Sauce recipe and it was a huge hit. Feel free to play around with it as you wish; I added lots of extra veggies (chopped red pepper, fresh tomatoes and mushrooms) to the sauce for extra nutrients, plus some extra basil. If you’re looking for wholesome comfort food, this hits the spot!

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Ingredients
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 4 stems fresh Italian flat leaf parsley
  • 4 stems fresh oregano
  • 2 stems fresh rosemary
  • 2 stems fresh basil, plus 2 more stems for garnish
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup heavy cream (optional)
  • 1 16-ounce package potato gnocchi
  • 8 ounces cherry size mozzarella balls, cut in half
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Add ¼ cup olive oil to a 10-inch high sided sauté pan or a saucepan over medium heat. Add the parsley, oregano, rosemary and 2 stems of basil and cook for about 5 minutes or until the herbs become crisp. Remove the herbs and discard then add the onion and garlic to the oil, lowering the heat if needed so the onions cook gently and don’t brown. Cook until the onions are transparent, about 5-7 minutes, then crush the tomatoes with your hand and add to the pan with juice. Season with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper and red pepper flakes and simmer for 30-40 minutes or until the sauce reduces and thicken, stirring occasionally. Stir in the heavy cream and remove from the heat.
  2. Meanwhile, bring a saucepan of water to a boil and add the gnocchi. Season generously with kosher salt and cook until the gnocchi float to the top of the boiling water. Drain and then place the gnocchi into the cooked sauce. Top with the halved mozzarella balls and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese then drizzle the tops of the gnocchi with the remaining olive oil. Broil for 5-8 minutes or until the cheese melts and the tops become crispy. Garnish with additional basil leaves and serve immediately.

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