Gnocchi with Arugula Pesto

I love cooking. I love finding amazing and ambitious recipes where I can spend all day cooking or baking and then end up with a meal I can really be proud of. During the work week though, let's be real that is not possible/practical at all. As the week goes on, cooking becomes more of a hassle and I just want delicious food to magically appear when I arrive home. I know everyone else can pretty much agree with all of this, which is why so many NYers just fall under the Seamless spell (aka ordering delivery). For days that I try to be responsible and not give into delivery, this is one of my favorite go to dishes. It is super easy, full of flavor and best of all can be altered for different meals throughout the week, toasted gnocchi with homemade arugula pesto.

2014-05-08 20.43.28.jpg
2014-05-08 20.44.49.jpg
2014-05-08 20.46.03.jpg
2014-05-08 20.55.12.jpg

What You'll Need

2 cups Arugula

1 clove of Garlic (note I used 2 in the picture above, but I'm a garlic freak) 

3/4 cups Olive Oil

1/2 cups Pine Nuts

1/2 cups grated Parmesan (plus more for serving if desired)

1/4 cups Ricotta (optional- makes the pesto very creamy aka delicious) (plus more for service if desired)

Zest of 1 Lemon

Salt to taste

1 package (17.5 oz) Gnocchi or pasta of your choice

 

Directions

1. Cook the pasta in a pot of boiling salted water and cook according to directions.

2. Place all ingredients from the arugula through the lemon in a food processor and blend until smooth. Feel free to add more olive oil to achieve desired thickness. Salt to taste.

If making gnocchi, I like to toast the gnocchi on the stove top after boiling. It makes them a little firmer which works well with the pesto. Place in a single layer on a medium to large sauce pan and toast for about 3-4 min each side over medium to high heat. 

Note there will be leftover pesto which can be saved in the refrigerator. Here are a few of my addition ideas for leftover pesto uses:

- Tomato and mozzarella pesto salad

- Spread for a sandwich

- Pesto pizza 

- Pesto mozzarella crostinis

- Other pasta dishes

The options are endless and adding pesto really elevates the meal. Enjoy!