Fun With Gnocchi and Apples

It’s a Sunday. A rainy Sunday to be precise. What does that mean? It means new recipe attempt time. No better time to try some new recipes than on a Sunday.

Before I get to that though, I’ll quickly go through the rest of my day.

It started fairly early this morning when I woke up around 10ish. My friend slept over because we went out dancing last night (of course) and it ended up being the most convenient and cheapest of options (taxis in this city suck and are impossible to get ahold of, just needed to get that little rant out for a second). We got to bed around 3:30 and yet still didn’t manage to sleep in that late. I can never seem to sleep in after a late night out though.

Anyway, we chatted for probably an hour or so before I dropped her at home. I was starving by this point and was ready for a meal, but it was pretty much lunch time by then so the breakfast-y meal I was thinking of having (oatmeal) was no longer what I wanted, and I instead went with the vegetable craving I was having and made a big salad.
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I also added cottage cheese to it but that was after mixing all of the dressing around so it was looking pretty ugly at that point.

I may have also eaten these:
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Possibly many times throughout the day.

And regardless of how full I was, I managed to fit this in as well:
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There’s always room for iced coffee.

Later on I did a 45 minute Tae bo workout but managed to get fairly significantly hungry half way through it. The second half was consequently not all that pleasant.

I fixed that dreaded hunger problem by chowing down on this beauty:
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A slice of Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel, toasted and topped with 2 tsp almond butter and smashed raspberries.

As I already mentioned, I had my mind set on trying out some recipes tonight. I dug through my cupboard and found a package of Gnocchi that had been in there for a while, and decided it finally deserved to be eaten. I searched around the net a bit for some kind of recipe, but didn’t really find anything that jumped out. So I decided to just throw some random stuff together and hope it worked.

According to my taste buds, it did. Others might disagree (aka my spice-intolerant mother who couldn’t quite handle its heat…), but I thoroughly enjoyed it.
I’ll call it Spicy Creamy Tomato Gnocchi. (Warning: This is fairly SPICY)
I don’t have any specific measurements as I randomly threw stuff together, but here’s what I did:
– First I sauteed some mushrooms and red peppers with vegetable broth and seasoning salt, then set them aside.
– I paper towel bloated some sun dried tomatoes in oil and cut them up into tiny pieces, then set those aside.
– For the sauce, I mixed together fat free sour cream (maybe 1/2 cup), Ragu pasta sauce (possibly another 1/2 cup), cayenne pepper, oregano, basil, red pepper flakes and some garden herb hot sauce stuff in my fridge. You could probably use any hot sauce, it just needed more kick and flavouring and this did the trick. Then I heated it all in a pan.
– While the sauce was heating, I boiled some water and threw the gnocchi in. They take only a few minutes to cook, and are done once they float to the top of the water.
– After draining, I just tossed the gnocchi with the sauce, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms and red peppers and then ATE IT.
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I topped it with goat cheese because goat cheese makes everything amazing. I also had a tiny bit of rice and broccoli on the side, along with those lovely tomato slices.
And a bunch of these cucumber slices, marinated in lemon juice and sea salt. Good, but I like em better with vinegar.
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I was so satisfied with this dinner and so impressed that I managed to make an edible (and in my opinion, delicious) meal out of thrown together foods, using a main component that I don’t cook with regularly. I’ll have to try this random throw together meal thing more often. My sinuses loved it too, they felt so refreshed after the intense spiciness of the dish. It didn’t seem like it was overly spicy at first, but a few bites in I was involuntarily crying tears of spicy delicious joy.
I think I’ll be buying gnocchi more often too. It’s just fun to eat in general.

Then, because we just bought a giant bag of apples, my mom suggested making some kind of apple-based dessert. I scored the web for some kind of apple bars and came across this simplicity.

I modified it slightly though, so here’s what I used:
– 1/2 cup melted margarine (just more convenient than butter)
– 3/4 cup brown sugar
– 1 egg
– approx 1/3 cup white all-purpose flour
– approx 2/3 cup whole wheat flour
– 1/2 tsp baking soda
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– 2 cups chopped apples, NOT peeled, finely diced
– approx 1/4 cup chopped almonds (the only nuts I had)
– handful rolled oats (probably around 1/4 cup)
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My piece:
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It ended being just a little on the drier side than I would like, but it still tasted pretty good. I’m hoping it’ll be one of those recipes that improved with age and will therefore taste a bit more moist tomorrow. It could also potentially use some kind of icing/glaze. Or maybe just a spread of nut butter would do the trick.

Back to another week of school tomorrow… second week in. Here we go…

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7 thoughts on “Fun With Gnocchi and Apples

  1. Could you have possibly made my mouth water anymore? I don’t think so.

    I have yet to try gnocchi but I LOVE spicy food so I know that the first time I try it (probably when I get back to school), I will be referring back to this post!

    And apple bars?! Wow, those look insanely good with the chunks of apple! Too bad they were a bit dry, but honestly I can’t tell! It looks perfectly crumbly!

    Hope you have a good week!

  2. gnocchi!!! sounds yum (sans mushrooms haha i can’t eat them!) why does your iced coffee always look so good? they look better than starbucks fraps! those bars look really good too, and they do say that these things are even better the day after so i hope it’s true for these too! even though they really already look great to me.

  3. Super-rainy here as well :-(

    Oooh, love the almond-butter/smashed raspberry topping for your toast!!

    SPICY GNOCCHI?!?!?!?! Fabulous!!! I’m definitely a fan of extra-spicy dishes :-) And the Apple Bars look like the perfect way to end a meal – yum!

    Good luck with school this week!!

  4. The smashed raspberry idea is SO COOL! I love it! Too bad they’re going out of season. :(
    That gnocchi sounds amazing. I LOVE SPICY. I must try it.
    Have a great week back at school!

  5. Jenn – The apple chunks in the bars are definitely the BEST part. I already doubled the amount the original recipe called for, but I think next time I would add even MORE. And chop them into bigger chunks to get more yummy mushy apple-y sweetness.

    Mi – I think I LIKE my iced coffees better than fraps, just because I know they are a heck of a lot healthier and a heck of a lot CHEAPER. Yeah, I’m a cheapie. I don’t want to doll out the kind of cash that Starbucks demands haha.
    And the bars DID improve a bit the next day. Now they have more moistness to them. Mmmm. I shouldn’t even call them bars though. They are much more like an apple cake.

    Christie – WOW, never thought of adding dates. Can’t wait to try it!

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