Wednesday 7 December 2011

Guest Post - Gnocchi with a twist

If you read my blog regularly, then you know Bila aka Nabila. While i do know that she is a fabulous writer and a good photographer, i am not too sure of her culinary skills since i haven't tasted anything she's made except this one time when she made mushrooms for me. So when she sent in a Gnocchi recipe that uses coconut milk, i was a little taken aback. I haven't tried it, so i am still not sure... so if you do try this recipe, it's at your own risk. You never know with these creative types...

If I had an option of choosing a middle name most befitting me, I would pick experimental. No, not the scientific kinds—far from it. I’m talking about the culinary kinds.
I love experimenting with anything food: my Maggi has never been consumed in its purest form for over 11 years now, chicken sausages are never just plain grilled or fried, and the omelettes I eat are far from the run-of-the-mill recipes. (There was a time when I went to restaurants and ordered dishes which seemed the most experimental and which unfortunately for me, nine times out of ten, turned out to be the worst dishes on the menu. But don’t let this one-off incident discourage you from trying out the thing that I’m suggesting you try out; my palate has gotten the better of me since then.)
So last night, the Mallu in me (there isn’t one, honest; this is just for effect)—or, if you want to go exotic, the Thai in me—decided to experiment with Gnocchi. What I used for a packet of Gnocchi:
Olive oil
A couple of cloves of garlic
One onion, finely chopped
Three tomatoes, pureed
Mixed herbs, fresh or out of the bottle – your call
Tabasco sauce to taste
A teaspoon of Demerara sugar (If you’re using tomato puree out of a pack, regulate the quantity of sugar accordingly)
Salt to taste
The surprise ingredient: 200 ml of coconut milk

Pour olive oil in a large pan (that’s what I used to put this dish together), throw in the garlic and onions and let them sweat it. Just as they’re changing colour, add the mixed herbs and sauté for a couple of minutes. Add the tomato puree and salt and let the puree cook through. Once that’s done, add the Tabasco sauce and Demerara sugar and cook the sauce till it reduces. Once the sauce has reduced to half of what it originally was, pour in half the coconut milk, stir and let it gently simmer for a bit. Add a little water to thin the sauce and check for taste. If you feel that the sauce needs more coconut milk, dunk the rest in. Meanwhile, throw in the Gnocchi in boiling water and wait for it to cook. (You’ll know it’s cooked when it rises to the surface of the water, which will be in precisely two minutes.) Strain the water out and put the Gnocchi into the sauce. Cover and let it simmer for a minute, and then serve.
Apologies for the image, my DigiSLR ran out of charge and I had to make do with my trusty Sony Ericsson J10i2 phone camera.

PS: Wednesdays is going to be dedicated to Guest Posts. If you'd like to contribute send me an email to ambicasrimal@gmail.com

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