This is a dinner that we eat often at our house. My husband and I are both massive gnocchi fans. And if you've ever tried gnocchi, then you probably know why—it's SO good. Tiny, pillow-like dumplings usually made from varying amounts of potato, flour and cheese. What's not to love? Plus gnocchi (store-bought or already made) takes just minutes to cook, so you can get a super filling dinner together fast.
If you're a purist and you want to make your own gnocchi, you can learn how here. I've been working on a whole wheat or alternative wheat with sweet potato version lately, but it's not ready yet. It still needs some work.
But this meal isn't about spending hours making everything from scratch. For this I simply bought some (basil) gnocchi that I saw at the store and wanted to try. Then I made my own sauce—a super easy and flavorful version. You can use this sauce on any kind of pasta. So feel free to use whatever you have on hand.
1 head of garlic
1 teaspoon olive oil
35 oz. can stewed tomatoes, drained
salt + pepper
First I roast the garlic. Simply peel back all the paper layers you can. Then cut off the top so the cloves are exposed. Drizzle a little olive oil on there so that it seeps into the head. Cover in aluminum foil and bake at 400°F for 35-40 minutes. Remove from the oven, remove foil, and allow to cool until just cool enough to handle.
Squeeze the now soft and fragrant garlic cloves out of their papery shells. Combine with the stewed tomatoes (well drained from the can juices, otherwise your sauce will be quite thin and soup-like). Puree with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Then heat in a pot until everything is warmed through. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed (maybe a little cayenne if you want to add some heat).
While the sauce is warming, you can cook your gnocchi (or other pasta). Top with some fresh herbs, parmesan cheese, and maybe a few chopped nuts for some crunch and a little protein. Simple and oh-so delicious. This is a big winner at our house, and I hope you love it too! xo. Emma
Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.