Ricotta gnocchi is just about the easiest pasta there is to make at home. I had a bunch of ricotta left over from my cheese danish experiment, and gnocchi was the first thing to come to mind when wondering what to do with it; but I want more flavor! Just so happens I had a big can of pumpkin puree in the pantry, and since I've decided not to make a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving, it needed a new use. The pumpkin gives the gnocchi just a slight sweetness, perfect with the sage cream sauce. Oh, the sauce....excuse me while I wipe the drool from my keyboard. This sauce is fairly simple, very rich, and oh so delicious. I want to eat it on everything! Even just bread dipped in the sauce would be great.
Pumpkin Ricotta Gnocchi
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup ricotta cheese
2 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp nutmeg (or more if you prefer a stronger flavor)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
In a large bowl, combine the ricotta and pumpkin. Add in flour, mixing just enough to combine into a soft dough. If you mix too much the gnocchi will be too heavy. Seperate dough into 6 sections. On a lightly floured surface, roll out a section into a rope approximately 1 inch in diameter. Using a sharp knife, or scraper, cut rope into 1 inch pieces, roll each piece along floured surface to coat and place on a lightly floured sheet. Continue this process for each dough section. You can keep the gnocchi on the sheet in the fridge until you're ready to cook. When ready, bring a pot of water to a slow boil. Add gnocchi, about 20 at a time, and boil until they rise to the surface.
Sage Cream Sauce
adapted from http://blog.streaminggourmet.com/
5 tbsp unsalted butter, seperated
2 tbsp fresh chopped sage (I used 1 tbsp dried)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup white wine (I didn't have wine, so substituted about 2 tbsp cooking sherry with 1/2 cup chicken broth)
1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
pinch of nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste (I didn't think it needed these)
Melt 1 tbsp of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and sage and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until reduced by half. Add 1 cup of heavy cream and cook until boiling. Add remaining butter, 1 tbsp at a time, stirring until melted after every one. Remove pan from heat. Add gnocchi to sauce, toss to coat, stir in remaining cream, parmesan cheese and nutmeg. Cook over very low heat until thickened, about 1 minute. Serve immediately topped with parmesan cheese.