I had a night out on Friday for Carnival here in Spain and offered to cook dinner for myself and 2 friends. I wanted something that would be bulky enough for us to be able have a few drinks and not leave the contents of our stomach somewhere embarassing or wake up feeling like we’d been ran over (some of my friends did wake up like this, but anyway). I decided to cook something I haven’t eaten in a while and never cooked before; gnocchi. Gnocchi is essentially potato dumplings that feel more like a pasta based dish. So it ticked the boxes of being carb heavy to line our stomachs! My family make it with mascarpone, tomatoes and spinach but dietary requirements of one friends ruled the mascarpone cheese out, so I decided to wing it.
Ingredients (this served 3 of us with a dash leftover);
- 400g of gnocchi
- 400g tin of tomatoes
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 cup of aubergine, cubed
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1/2 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- Crushed black pepper
- Pinch of salt
- Couple of sprigs of fresh basil
- Olive oil
- 100ml red wine
- Mix the aubergine with the olive oil in a pan, add the onion and red wine.
- On a medium heat, put the lid on the pan and allow the onions to soften.
- Add the tomatoes and all the seasoning, tasting and adjusting accordingly.
- Allow the sauce to simmer for around 5 minutes then add the gnocchi and spinach.
- Put the lid on and allow the gnocchi to soften in the sauce, takes about 5-10 minutes, stir occasionally to prevent burning.
- To check if the gnocchi has cooked properly, you can slice one open and it should be soft through the centre and hot.
Note; alternatively, you can boil the gnocchi in water for 2-3 minutes, then add to the sauce.
- Tear up the basil and sprinkle on top before serving.
It’s tasty, simple, cheap, quick and it’s healthy! We had a side dish of caeser salad with ours. You can also add peppers in with the tomatoes to add more vegetables (going to try that next time).
I’m finding that I’m enjoying just winging recipes with new ingredients but I will return to using recipes too! I have a rather long bucket list awaiting my attention!