Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Italian Feast

Friday night we had a real Italian five-star meal (not that it was a real Italian meal, but it was a real five-star meal -- I'm not a real Italian, so I have no idea). There was no sound at the table, except for the occasional "Mmmm," so I knew I'd found a couple winners.

I made homemade gnocchi, which we all really enjoy. But, in an effort to make something
Francis could enjoy (no tomatoes on the reflux diet) I made a Fontina Cheese sauce. It was simple and totally delicious. But, because I was afraid the cheese sauce would be too rich by itself, I topped the cheese sauce with just a drizzle of marinara. The fresh basil was crucial -- don't leave it out. The Fontina Cheese sauce recipe came from and the gnocchi is my recipe.

I also made a Chopped Italian Salad that was simple to prepare -- one of the simplest salads I've ever made -- and so refreshing. The salad recipe came from

I'm posting both recipes as I made them. Sorry, no pics -- it was just gone.

Gnocchi in Fontina Cheese Sauce

1 pound refrigerated gnocchi (or one recipe of homemade)
5 T. unsalted butter, divided
2 T. chopped red onion
one clove garlic minced
8 ounces fontina cheese, cut in small cubes (shredded would be even better)
1/3 cup heavy cream
3 T. grated Parmesan cheese
1 c. Marinara sauce, hot
1 T. chopped fresh basil

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil.
Add the gnocchi, and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
Melt one T. butter.
Drain gnocchi, toss with melted butter and set aside.
Once the gnocchi goes into the pot, start the sauce,
as you want the gnocchi to be done first.
Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
Add the onions and garlic, and cook for a few minutes, until tender.
Stir in the cream, and heat to almost a boil.
Gradually mix in the fontina and parmesan cheeses, being careful not to boil.
Stir until smooth, then remove from the heat immediately, or the sauce may clump.
Place gnocchi into serving dishes, and spoon the sauce over them.
Drizzle with a few tablespoons marinara.
Garnish with chopped fresh basil.

Chopped Italian Salad

2 heads heart of Romaine lettuce, cut into 1-inch squares (about 4 - 5 cups lettuce)
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1/2 c. pitted and chopped green olives
3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
3 T. olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 t. fresh-ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
In a large glass bowl, combine the romaine, onion, and the olives.
Toss to combine.
Add the vinegar, oil, salt, pepper, and Parmesan to the bowl.
Toss thoroughly to combine the ingredients.



nutmeg said...

Your recipes all sound so amazing! Can we come eat at your house?


I think I'll be trying this one.

scmom (Barbara) said...

See, Meg, being my neighbor would have had its bonuses!