Saturday, October 6, 2012

Sweet Potato Gnocchi and Balsamic Kale

The enormous bunch of kale in the fridge has been calling my name for days. So tonight, kale is on the menu. As a nice hearty green, it maintains a relatively firm bite once cooked, while also lending some tenderness. He's a friendly green, that kale - definitely my friend. He's even friends with the sweet potato; both of which are excellent sources of vitamin A. The sweet potato gnocchi paired quite nicely with the kale tonight. I myself did not make the gnocchi from scratch, but someone from the local farmers market did!

 Kale cooks down a bit - don't be intimated by its ostentatious raw appearance...

Gnocchi and Kale
serves 2 happy people

1 bunch of kale, torn into peices
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup raisins
1-2 tablespoons olive oil (I used a Persian Lime infused olive oil)
Splash of traditional balsamic vinegar
Splash of Sriracha

2 cups sweet potato gnocchi, boiled and drained as per directions (you typically want to boil in a large pot, giving them a little room to expand and to prevent them from sticking to each other)
2 oz feta cheese
Cilantro as a garnish

Cilantro and garlic: some of my favorite aromatics

  • Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat and add onion; cook until soft and slightly brown. 
  • Add kale and balsamic, and cook down, about 3-4 minutes. 
  • Lastly, add garlic, seeds, raisins and sriracha. Cook about 2-3 minutes longer, and set aside, covered.
  • Plate up! Place some gnocchi on a plate (1/2-1 cup is an appropriate portion size), drizzle with balsamic, and top with 1 oz of feta and a sprinkle of cilantro.
  • Add some kale and you've got yourself some dinner.

The sweetness of the gnocchi pairs nicely with the salty feta, and the cilantro gives it all a unique level of flavor. A drizzle of balsamic ties it all together; no extravagant sauce to be made. Just a simple yet high quality vinegar. 

I love adding dried fruit and nuts/seeds to sauteed veggies. It makes them a little more hearty, enhances the amount of vitamins and minerals, and creates a variety of texture. 

I love feeding this guy :)