Do you remember the first time?

This is the recipe that is responsible for the birth of the blog. A lonely night in, an empty belly, too much vino and a camera phone later…an idea was hatched! Anyway, this recipe gives a very grown up tasting sausage gnocchi dish full of roasted veg, a bizarre prep technique and bags of flavour. Stovies con Italia. (Well, it’s potato and meat so you see what we mean)

Ingredients:

1 pack of good gnocchi
1 stock cube – veg or chicken
A pan full of water

3 tbsp good strong olive oil (I know, 3 tbsp of oil. In this day and age… it’s an oil based ‘sauce’ so deal with it)
4 of your fav. sausages (we like anything from Bowers’ in Stockbridge)
2 banana shallots – thick slices
2 peppers – thick slices
1 pack of cherry tomatoes
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
Juice of half a lemon
1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
1 garlic clove – crushed
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
Good handful of grated pecorino

Pour the oil into a decent sized roasting tin and heat over a medium flame (or ring, or glowy bit depending on your cooker). Remove the skin from the sausages and break into small pieces with your thumb and finger dropping them into the oil as you go. Cook the sausage pieces until they start to catch, stir only once or twice – you’re aiming for crispy bits.

Add the shallots, garlic and peppers, cooking until they start to soften. Stir regularly as you don’t want too much colour on these. Remove from the heat and add the balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, herbs and spices then stir thoroughly.

The tomatoes need to be deseeded, this will sound a little bizarre but the easiest way to do this is to pop them over the sink. Just squeeze firmly and watch out for wayward flying seeds. If we were on telly the Health and Safety Department might make us wear goggles. Throw the tomatoes into the pan and stir through. Pop into a medium/high (gas 6/200’c) and bake for 15 minutes.

Boil the gnocchi in the stock for about 5 minutes – they’re cooked once they start to float.

Remove the roasted goodness from the oven. Drain the gnocchi and add to the roasting tin along with the cheese. Give it all a good mix then serve.

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