Weeknight Cooking

Cook This: Dinner Tonight

May 19, 2011

Inspiration for tonight's dinner -- simple, rustic, and satisfying.

We've neatly condensed the recipes below, but to read the full-fledged versions (and save and print them) just click on the recipe links or photos. Dinner is served!

The Menu:

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Grandma DiLaura's Italian Ricotta Gnocchi by cdilaura

ricotta gnocchi


Roasted Bagna Cauda Broccoli by mariaraynal

Roasted Bagna Cauda Broccolli


The Grocery List:

  • • 1 pound fresh whole milk ricotta cheese
  • • 1/2 pound hunk (or larger) of Parmesan cheese
  • • 1 whole nutmeg for grating
  • • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • • 1 head of broccoli
  • • 2 anchovy fillets
  • • a bottle of white wine (1 splash for the broccoli; lots of splashes for you)
  • • 1 lemon, preferably Meyer
  • • 1/4 cup sliced or slivered almonds


We hope you have olive oil, butter, a few cloves of garlic, a large egg, salt and freshly ground pepper on hand -- but if not, time to stock your larder!


The Plan:

1. Get your oven set to 425. Grate parmesan: 1/4 cup for the gnocchi, and as much as you like for the broccoli (a lot!). 

2. Make the gnocchi (get your kids in on the fun too!): Mix the egg with the ricotta cheese and a tablespoon of olive oil. Add a 1/4 cup of grated parmesan and freshly grated nutmeg to taste. Add flour a little at a time until dough comes together. On a heavily floured surface, fashion the dough into 1/2-inch ropes, then cut them into 1-inch pieces. If you fancy, roll them along the back of a fork to make ridges, then place them on a lightly floured baking sheet. Into the freezer they go.

See? That wasn't so hard. You just made pasta.

3. Chop the broccoli into florets and onto a baking sheet they go. Season with salt, pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil -- into the oven for 20-25 minutes. Put a pot of water on to boil and salt it till it tastes like the sea. Mince 2 cloves of garlic.

4. In a small skillet, heat butter and olive oil, add that garlic and 2 anchovy fillets and sauté for a few minutes, pour in a splash of wine and a squeeze of lemon then let the sauce reduce a little. Toast those almonds. Dress the broccoli with the sauce and sprinkle with almonds and parmesan. Done.

5. Drop the gnocchi in your (now boiling) water and watch as they float to the top. Scoop them out. If you like, make a little brown butter in a pan, and pour it over gnocchi hot out of the pot. Or dress with any combo of olive oil, butter and parmesan. Mm.

Last step? Pour yourself a glass of white. You deserve it. Why? Because dinner is served.


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aargersi May 19, 2011
I haven't made the gnocchi (yet) but the broccoli is outstanding!!!!
healthierkitchen May 19, 2011
Great combo!