Without doubt one of my favorite channels has to be Food Network. It is the first channel I go to when I first turn on my tv and the only one I have memorized besides basic cable. I recently discovered a new "talk show" on food network called The Kitchen...and I love it. This recipe is inspired from a dish that Geoffrey Zakarian (Iron Chef winner and judge on Chopped)created, except I switched up the vegetables and used a store bought pesto.
Even though a main component of this dish is potato pasta it was fresh, flavorful and light - the perfect spring/summer dish.
You'll notice below that the I put the serving size between 2-4 people. If it is the main dish it will serve 2 people some very comfortable portions. If you serving as a side, it will serve 4 nicely - I recommend some grilled chicken seasoned with a little salt, pepper and zest from the lemon you will use in the recipe below.
Ingredients (serves 2-4)
1 bunch of asparagus (when it's cooked and cut, it's about 2 cups)
1 17.6oz package of gnocchi (or 3 cups cooked)
1 shallot - chopped (about 1/4 cup)
1/3 cup pesto
1 Tablespoon Butter
Juice from 1 Lemon
2 1/2 Tablespoons EVOO
Salt and Pepper
Parmesan Cheese (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees while you are prepping the rest of the ingredients.
2. Once oven is preheated, on a baking sheet put the asparagus, drizzle 1 Tablespoon of the EVOO and a couple of shakes of salt and pepper. Mix around with your hands and then put in the oven for 5-7 minutes, until asparagus starts to get a little wrinkly.
3. When the water is at a boil, put in the gnocchi and cook as directed on your package.
4. Once gnocchi is cooked, in a medium pan heat up the remaining olive oil over medium heat. Place the shallot and the gnocchi and cook until the gnocchi is slightly toasted (a light brown color). Anywhere from 5-10 minutes should do it.
5. When the gnocchi begins to color, put in the asparagus, lemon juice, butter and pesto. Cook for an addition 2 minutes.
6. Divide between plates and grate fresh Parmesan over to taste.
7. Enjoy :)
-I used store bought Pesto, if that's the route you choose (instead of homemade) I suggest you buy some out of the refrigerated section. I got mine from Whole Foods - Severino Classic Pesto and it was fantastic. Bad pesto could really break this recipe.
-A great addition to this recipe would be bacon, definitely adding it next go around.