This post is brought to you thanks to Le Creuset.
You remember that first set of pans you got as an adult?
For most of us, that meant shoddy hand-me-downs with suspect stuff encrusted on the handle, dented lids, and flaking-off coating that you just chalked up to helping your recommended dietary allowance of minerals.
When we got married, we received a few new pans, and supplemented the nicer ones with stuff from big box stores. We moved across the country only six weeks after getting married, so dropping a paycheck on quality cookware wasn’t in the cards.
Fast forward through the years of home ownership and two kids, where there is always some pressing need like water heaters or fences or asthma medication, and it’s no surprise that investing in cookware was always put off.
That is, until this year, when my family surprised me with a set of stainless steel Le Creuset for my birthday. Granted, as I spent the entire day sick in bed I didn’t get to enjoy it right away, but I was thrilled to finally have pans without plastic handles.
I’ve used my pans every day since, and I’ve loved how beautiful they’ve stayed, even when we don’t get them cleaned right away. (Ahem.)
When I recently received the Saucier pan, I was blown away by how pretty it was. Even my toddler was enchanted, making faces at himself in the reflective curves.
The deep sides and rounded bottom of the Saucier make it ideal for recipes that need movement, like risottos, stir-frys, or quickly sautéing foods you don’t want to stick.
With the weather cooling down — even in Texas — I wanted to make a heartier dish full of seasonal flavor, so pumpkin gnocchi was at the top of my list.
Gnocchi, like pasta, is actually quite easy to make from scratch, but does take some time. If your kids are into cooking, this is a great project for them, because they can take part in the entire process.
You only need pumpkin puree, an egg, flour, and salt, though you can easily incorporate spices or herbs into the dough.
I prefer to use fresh herbs in the sauce, which keeps the flavor a bit lighter. That is, as light as it can be when paired with butter, shallots, and diced bacon!
I have a gnocchi paddle, but you definitely don’t need one to create the characteristic grooves of the gnocchi. A fork will do just as well.
The main thing to remember when forming the gnocchi is to use a light hand when it comes to handling the dough and adding flour, as too much flour or overworking will make the gnocchi too chewy.
Also, you can use whichever flour you prefer for these, including whole wheat, fine pasta flour, or even a gluten-free blend.
Add the flour in small batches, as you might not need to use the whole amount, depending on how much liquid is in your puree.
After the gnocchi boils, simply toss it in the sauce and serve. It doesn’t take long to go from pan to plate for this comforting seasonal dish.
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups flour, plus more for dusting
- 2 slices thick-cut bacon
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup shallots, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- Mix together pumpkin, egg, and salt. Slowly add the flour, a little at a time, until a soft dough forms. Knead dough a few times, but don't overwork it. Divide dough into four pieces.
- Dust a kitchen towel or board with flour. Roll each piece of dough into a long snake, then cut each snake into small pieces.
- Form the gnocchi lines by rolling it softly down the tines of a fork or on a gnocchi paddle. Set aside on a lightly floured towel until ready to cook.
- Set four quarts of water to boil.
- Dice bacon and put in saucier. Set heat to medium and cook bacon until crispy, then reduce heat to medium-low and add butter and shallots, stirring frequently.
- When the water is boiling, add gnocchi and cook for 3-4 minutes, until they float to the top. Remove from pot using a slotted spoon and immediately add them to the saucier.
- Add thyme and stir to coat gnocchi, then plate and serve.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 347Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 83mgSodium: 347mgCarbohydrates: 43gFiber: 3gSugar: 3gProtein: 10g
Disclaimer: I received a Saucier pan for the purpose of review. I was not otherwise compensated for this post, and as always, my opinions are my own.