Donna's Daily Dish
Inspiring people to create every day recipes
You just got off the beach and the family is hungry. You whip out a large, hopefully non-stick skillet and start heating up the oil. The gnocchi go in the pan and cook until they are golden brown all over. Place them in a dish and melt some butter. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. You’re on a roll, now add the wine, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes; cook until reduced. In the home stretch you add the shrimp and sauté until just pink. Add the gnocchi back to the pan and add a bit more salt, lemon zest and parsley. Toss all the ingredients together so everything is well coated. You’re almost there, add some cut lemon and a squeeze of juice from one half and give another toss. Taste to adjust seasoning, pat yourself on the back as dinner is done!
What a flavorful dish. My husband and I devoured just about this entire meal. The gnocchi had a nice crispness, sauce was tart with a bit of heat and the shrimp were tender. A great quick meal in the books.
One-Pot Zucchini-Basil Pasta is the second Alexa Weibel recipe that I’ve made. Not only did I use my CSA zucchini, but I picked some fresh basil from my herb garden. You’ll also need vegetable stock, medium pasta shells, mascarpone (or crème fraîche or softened cream cheese), fresh garlic, kosher salt, black pepper, roasted and salted almonds and fresh parsley.
Before I make any of the recipes I find on the NYT Cooking app, I read through the cook’s comments. For this recipe, I followed several suggestions to enhance the recipe. Here are the adjustments I made based on the comments:
For the cooking process, I again heeded the advice of another cook and sautéed the diced zucchini, garlic and shallot in my LeCrueset braiser. I seasoned the vegetables with salt, red pepper flakes and cooked until the vegetables were slightly softened. I removed the vegetables from the pan and added the box of stock.
The heat was brought up to medium high so the stock would begin to boil before adding the pasta. Once added, I stirred to coat all the pieces. Softened cream cheese was mixed in and stirred until it melted. Although the pasta had a cook time of 8 minutes, it took additional time. Approximately five minutes before I thought the pasta would be done, I added the vegetables and mixed.
While the pasta finished cooking, I made the gremolata which consisted of chopped basil, parsley and almonds. I didn’t have smoked almonds, but I did roast whole almonds to bring out their flavor before chopping.
To serve, you add the pasta to the bowls and dress with a sprinkling of gremolata, no grated cheese needed here. Wow, what a dish! My husband said it was a “chef quality” meal. The pasta was perfectly cooked, between the cream cheese and starch from the pasta, it made for a light, creamy sauce. The topping of gremolata added a nice contrast in textures and add a freshness to the dish. This was absolutely marvelous.
Tomorrow I have an appointment with my orthopedic doctor. When I had my hip replaced, I baked him an assortment of Italian biscotti. He’s not a sweet lover, but did enjoy my Biscotti di Prato. This time I dug out my vintage “Gourmet Magazine,” one of several that survived our Super Storm Sandy basement flood, to make Rosemary Walnut Biscotti. The recipe is from the baking instructor Carol Field, who is known for book "The Italian Baker.
For this recipe you’ll need unbleached all-purpose flour, cornmeal (preferably stone-ground), double-acting baking powder, salt, an egg, plain non-fat yogurt, unsalted butter, toasted walnuts, and fresh rosemary, which came from my herb garden.
Using a stand mixer, mix the dry ingredients, egg and yogurt first. Next, add the butter and finally the walnuts and rosemary. The dough is turned out onto a floured work surface and kneaded several times. A five-minute rest period is needed before shaping into 12-inch x 2-inch-wide logs. Although the recipe calls for baking at 325°, the next time I’ll bake at 350°. After 25 minutes, I tested the logs and a toothpick came out clean. However, after cooling for 10 minutes, I started to slice the log and noticed the center was still a bit raw. An additional 10 minutes was needed. After slicing and baking I kept the temperature at 350° and baked a second time for 15 minutes without turning the cookies over.
This is an interesting flavor for a cookie. You had the subtle flavor of rosemary, a slight crunch from the walnuts and a soft, yet firm crumb to the cookie. I could see eating these with a glass of red wine. I hope he enjoys them.
One-Pan Shrimp Scampi with Crispy Gnocchi
By Melissa Clark
The New York Times, “A Good Appetite”
October 26, 2022
Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 3 to 4
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
1-pound gnocchi (fresh, frozen or shelf-stable)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 garlic cloves, finely grated or minced
½ cup dry white wine (or clam juice, or broth)
Kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal) and freshly ground black pepper
⅛ teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more for serving
1-pound large or extra-large shrimp, shelled (deveined, if you like)
½ cup chopped parsley
One-Pot Zucchini-Basil Pasta
By Alexa Weibel
New York Times Cooking
Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 4 Servings*
2¾cups vegetable stock
12ounces medium pasta shells
2medium zucchini (about 14 ounces total), trimmed and cut into ½-inch cubes
4ounces mascarpone, crème fraîche or softened cream cheese
1large garlic clove, finely chopped
⅓packed cup thinly sliced basil
Kosher salt and black pepper
3tablespoons chopped roasted salted almonds
3tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
Based on comments from other cook’s, I made the following adjustments to the recipe.
Rosemary Walnut Biscotti
“Foods for Holiday Giving – Biscotti”
By Carol Field
“Gourmet Magazine” December 1992
Yield: approximately 40 biscotti
2-1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornmeal (preferably stone ground)
1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
½ cup plain non-fat yogurt
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, cut into bits and softened
¾ cup walnuts, toasted and chopped coarse
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped fine or 1 teaspoon dried crumbled
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment blend the flour, the cornmeal, the baking powder and the salt, add the egg and the yogurt, and beat the mixture on low speed until a dough is formed. Add the butter, beating until it is just incorporated and stir in the walnuts and the rosemary.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, knead it several times and let it stand, covered with a kitchen towel for 5 minutes. Halve the dough and working on a large buttered and floured baking sheet with floured hands, form each piece of dough into a flattish log 12 inches long and 2 inches wide. Arrange the logs at least 3 inches apart on the baking sheet, bake them in the middle of a preheated 325°F oven for 20-25 minutes, or until they are set and pale golden, and let them cool on the sheet on a rack for 10 minutes. On a cutting board cut the logs crosswise on the diagonal into ½-inch thick slices, arrange the biscotti, cut sides down, on the baking sheet and bake them in the 325°F oven for 10-12 minutes on each side, or until then are pale golden. Transfer the biscotti to racks to cool and store them in airtight containers.
Donna’s Notes: Although I baked the cookies at the suggested temperature, because they weren’t quite baked through, I had to bake for an additional 10 minutes. I would increase the oven temperature to 350°. Make sure you test the doneness by inserting a toothpick into the dough. The biscotti are a bit delicate, therefore, I wouldn’t turn the cookies over during the second baking. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown on the bottom.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners. To receive my quarterly newsletter, click on link below and use “Subscribe” button.