Butternut In An OpenSky

*Have you entered to win a $50 shopping spree from iHerb.com yet? What are you waiting for? The lovely folks at iHerb have offered $5 your first purchase when you use the code SIF006*

When I started cooking a few years ago, there were quite a few things that I never thought I'd be able to make. Among those things are: homemade black molé, tamales, tortillas, pasta, and gnocchi. See, I love all those things, and I'm a complete snob when it comes to those things, they have to be fantastic. I just never thought I'd have the skill necessary to make any of them!

I made tortillas last year at one point, and while they were ok, they were definitely not anything to be proud of. I've yet to conquer the other dishes, that is, until tonight. Yesterday at the grocery store, butternut squashes were inexpensive, so I got a nice big one (TWSS?) I had every intent of roasting it and using the flesh for something, but I didn't know what yet. Then, Adam showed me a new game he got on his Nintendo DSi called Personal Trainer: Cooking. It's not a new game, but new to us.

Anyway, we looked up squash recipes, and low and behold, since the game is from Japan, all the squash recipes featured kabocha (so I thought of a few of you). Since kabocha is sweeter than a butternut squash, I figured that any of those recipes would work for the big butternut sitting on our counter. One in particular caught my eye: squash gnocchi. I had my mind made up. That's what I'd make tonight.

Of course, I couldn't leave well enough alone and cook the recipe as dictated by the nice little chef guy in the game, I had to muck with it. What I did end up with though were sweet, garlicky, peppery, doughy little dumplings which I tossed with sauteed spinach and mushrooms and topped with some parmesan cheese.

Butternut Squash Gnocchi
1 large butternut squash (about 2.5 lbs)
3 c. whole wheat flour
1 egg
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
fresh ground pepper

Heat oven to 375*. Cut the squash vertically, clean out seeds and fibers, and roast on a baking pan for about 45 minutes to an hour. When done, allow to cool slightly and scoop the flesh into a large bowl (I used my KA Mixer with the dough hook to do this). Allow to cool 15 minutes. Mix in garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Rub the thyme between your fingers to break apart, then add to the mixture, stirring gently. Gradually add in the whole wheat flour until the dough comes together and is no longer sticky. At this point, bring a large pot of water to boil. Take handfuls of the dough in lightly floured hands and roll into a log on a lightly floured surface. Cut into bite sized pieces, then drop them into the boiling water. When they float, remove them with a slotted spoon to a colander.

Now, to be completely honest, I think I overworked the dough. It was a bit chewy for my taste, but the flavor was fantastic! I do realize that it's not that daunting to make gnocchi! I'm totally trying regular potato ones soon.

Now, for the big news. I alluded to this on Twitter earlier, and being the newlywed that I am, everyone assumed my "big news" was that I'm pregnant. MOST DEFINITELY NOT! I do however have an exciting announcement!

Last week, you may have noticed that I focused on many of the gadgets, appliances, and cool things I have going on in our kitchen...heck, I even called it "gadget week"! There was a reason behind this besides just showing off the cool stuff we have. I have decided that, along with
many of my blogger friends, I'm opening an OpenSky shop! See, I was always one of those people who said "I wish I could make that but I'm missing (insert gadget or ingredient here)". I'm hoping that my shop can be the place where you find the elusive gadgets, ingredients, and fun stuff to make your kitchen complete! Right now, I only have 11 items up, but I'll be adding as I find new ones. I'm looking forward to working with OpenSky...they seem to be the COOLEST company! You can find my shop under What's For Dinner on OpenSky. I hope to "see" you all there. Feel free to let me know if there are items you'd like to see, and I'll do my best to get them on there. Happy shopping!

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12 Responses to Butternut In An OpenSky

  1. Yay! Congrats on Open Sky. And I’m am losing my mind or did you just change your blog layout?! I LOVE IT!!

  2. Christina says:

    Aww the new blog layout is super cute Mara!

    Good job on the gnocchi! I’ve only made it once and I was PETRIFIED I’d overwork the dough so I barely worked it. That was way back at the beginning of the blog. I think I’m a lot more confident and adventurous now, so I should probably try it again!
    .-= Christina´s last blog ..Cherry and Cream Cheese Shortbread =-.

  3. That gnocchi looks incredible! Congrats on the Open Sky! So exciting!
    .-= Madeline – Greens and Jeans´s last blog ..now that’s what I call a weekend =-.

  4. Holy canol, that looks AWESOME!!!! So trying this next week! Yummo!
    .-= Deanna – The Unnatural Mother´s last blog ..Liar, Liar Pants on Fire =-.

  5. Rose says:

    My god, Mara. This looks freaking fantastic.
    .-= Rose´s last blog ..Mark’s Kitchen =-.

  6. Wow!! That dish looks fab! Gnocchi used to be my favorite…I can still taste the dough-y-ness now!


  7. coco says:

    Wooooo!!! those gnocchis are stunning!!!! I’m sooo want to be your guest at dinner!!! 😀
    .-= coco´s last blog ..Productive stay-in Sunday! =-.

  8. Spiceaholic says:

    I love what you did with the place! 😉

    Those gnocchi look so good! This looks like a good way for me to sneak in some squash.
    .-= Spiceaholic´s last blog ..Spice’s Bites — Jan. 25, 2010 =-.

  9. MizFit says:

    when I grow up Im going to juggle a full time job marriage and redo my blog and open a shop—-like you do.

    I soo need me some blogbotox 🙂
    .-= MizFit´s last blog ..MizFit & The Ellen Show. =-.

  10. Tania says:

    wow! your gnocchi look fantastic!
    i must confess, that being italian, i have never made gnocchi because they always intimdated me!

  11. Natalie says:

    what do you do with the egg? its no in the directions…

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