Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Pumpkin Alfredo with Gnocchi

Hello November. And happy election day. Whether you're elated about your choice for president, or entered your voting location feeling a little conflicted (like I did), I think it's time for some comfort food, don't you? Even better when that comfort food has a sneaky dose of Vitamin A folded into its creamy crevices. And you know what might make it even better. Fifteen minutes. Start to finish. Yeah yeah, you're welcome.

I like to make my own Alfredo and I'm going to tell you straight up that I favor a recipe that is a lot thinner than what most people have come to expect from their Alfredo (because it often uses thickeners to thicken it whereas I prefer to just stick with cream and cheese, if you please). That said, this is easy to thick up if that's your thing. You'll find instructions for both below.

Also, this could easily be served on regular old pasta, but at this time of year I always get a hankering for those thick doughy bites of gnocchi, so that's what I went with. I even found a pumpkin variety at Aldi. Perfect. And to top this off, mushrooms sauteed in butter. It was just the perfect fit, but if mushrooms embody everything that is childhood food angst for you, you can skip them. This is just fantastic on its own.

Pumpkin Alfredo with Gnocchi
Serves 4
Cook time: 15 minutes for everything
Cost: $5.25
gnocchi: 2.00, cream: 1.25, pumpkin: .10, butter: .40, Parmesan cheese: 1.00, mushrooms: .50

1 package gnocchi
1 2/3 C cream
3-4 Tbsp pumpkin puree
5 Tbsp butter
1 C Parmesan cheese
mushrooms, optional
salt to taste

Boil water, then cook gnocchi according to the package directions.

While the gnocchi is cooking, add butter and cream to a pot. Simmer it for several minutes. After 5-8 minutes it will reduce just a bit.

(While it's simmering, you can slice a few mushrooms, and saute them in butter with salt.)

After your cream has reduced, remove it from the heat. Whisk in the pumpkin, then add the Parmesan cheese and some generous sprinkles of salt (taste as you go to get the right amount). Whisk until it's smooth. Then drain your gnocchi and add it to this sauce.

Note: As stated, it will be a thinner sauce. If you must have it thicker, then while the butter/cream mixture is simmering, combine 1 tsp cornstarch and 2 tsp milk in a small cup. Pour that into your simmering cream, whisking as you go. It will thicken slightly. Then continue with the recipe by adding pumpkin, cheese, etc.

Top with sauteed mushrooms if desired.


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