autumn perfected: butternut squash gnocchi

Squash, Shrooms, and Sage: the three ingredients that make this dish my new autumn favorite. Tossed with a brown butter and garlic sauce, it’s probably the best meal I’ve ever made. I may or may not have made another batch for my roommate just so she could tell me how good it was… The dense dumplings stick to your ribs and the farmers market-fresh mushrooms and sage add an earthy sense of dining.  Add a glass of red wine and it’s a meal to impress.

I followed this recipe from Iowa Girl Eats, but put a little of my own spin on it…

Slight alterations in order of recipe steps…

1. DO NOT skip the step that involves cooking the mashed squash over medium heat to ensure excess fluid evaporates. You won’t have to add more flour later which can result in dry, tasteless gnocchi.

2. I added 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and a dash or two of nutmeg as I added the egg, salt, and flour.

3. As you are kneading the dough, have LOTS of flour on hand and limit yelling if small children are around. It takes awhile to form, but add a little flour at a time and just keep kneading.

4. After roping and cutting dough into chunks, I put the dumplings in the freezer for an hour to allow them to set. It made the cooking process a little easier in the long run

5. For the sauce, I made a brown butter sauce instead and sauteed mushrooms in the sauce before adding gnocchi:
-Melt 2Tbsp. butter in medium sauce pan set over low-medium heat. When the butter begins to get just slightly bubbly, add the chopped garlic clove and as many chopped bella mushrooms as you like.

-Stir the garlic in the butter for 1 minute. Add the chopped sage to the garlic butter and continue stirring and cooking the mixture for 1 to 2 additional minutes, until the butter has turned very light brown and has a rich, nutty aroma.

And bon a petite- there you have it: a somewhat time intensive meal that is completely worth it. Make a big batch and freeze what you don’t use. To cook frozen gnocchi, take directly from freezer and add to boiling water; cook until dumplings rise to top! — Cheers!

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