Spring is a wonderful time – all the current crop is starting to appear and we no longer are quite so reliant on stuff grown on the other side of the planet! Asparagus is one of my favourite spring things…I find it delicious in any form! Baked, steamed, sauteed, you name it.
This recipe comes from there being a surfeit of asparagus in my fridge…I was thinking about making it with a pasta of some kind and looking around to see what all was hanging around in the fridge, and this is the happy result. I found some mascarpone and got this idea.
You could use veggies of choice for this, cutting them as you would for a stir fry. You could also, if preferred, use pasta or even egg noodles.
Have your prep done ahead of cooking the gnocchi, the sauce only takes a couple of minutes to make. Hope you like it 🙂
1 package gnocchi
2 tablespoons pine nuts (optional)
6 green onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 orange bell pepper, chopped
10 spears asparagus, ends snapped off, cut into 1″ lengths
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
1/3 cup dry vermouth (e.g.. Noilly Prat)
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
salt and freshly ground pepper
chopped parsley to sprinkle (optional)
In dry frying pan, toast pine nuts for a couple of minutes until golden, watching the entire time of cooking as they burn easily. Place pine nuts in bowl to cool. Set aside.
Put pot of water on to boil for gnocchi. Once water is boiling, add gnocchi and cook until they float (just a few minutes, don’t overcook).
In small bowl, stir mascarpone cheese and vermouth together. Set aside.
As gnocchi is cooking, in large frying pan or wok, melt butter over medium heat, and add asparagus pieces and bell pepper. Stir fry for a couple of minutes, until asparagus starts to turn bright green. Add green onion and garlic, and cook for a minute or two to soften but not brown.
Add mascarpone/vermouth mixture to vegetables. Mix thoroughly. If too thick, take a tablespoon or two of the gnocchi water and add it to “loosen” the sauce.
Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle Parmesan over top and stir in gently.
If gnocchi are not quite cooked, remove sauce from heat. If they are cooked, drain them and add them to the sauce, mixing gently.
Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Makes 2-4 servings, depending on how hungry you are 🙂