Sunday, November 17, 2013

Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Balsamic Brown Butter for a Squashin' Winter #SundaySupper

Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Balsamic Brown Butter

Thank you for your patience with my hiatus.

About a year ago, I moved to my current residence where I published my first dish from my new home. At the time, I hadn't worked out the best place to take pictures of my food which resulted in a shoddy pictures, even by my low standards. So when the team at #SundaySupper Movement tackled winter squash dishes this week (hosted by Heather of girlichef), I welcomed the opportunity to reshoot and update my pumpkin gnocchi dish.

The Challenge

Fix my sub-standard photography.

The Source

I substituted butternut squash for the pumpkin plus an egg for the olive oil and updated the brown butter sauce for more flavor using this Emeril Lagasse recipe, but omitted the herbs in the gnocchi dough and followed Willow's method ofWill Cook for Friends.


1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds) halved lengthwise, seeds and fibers removed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour, plus more if needed
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1/4 cup minced shallots
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons fresh sage, finely chopped plus more for garnish
Freshly grated parmesan cheese for garnish


1. Roast the squash and make the dough: Preheat the oven to 375° Fahrenheit. Rub the olive oil into the flesh and season with salt and pepper. Place on a foil-lined sheet pan and roast in the oven until tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from the oven and rest until cool enough to handle. Scoop out the flesh into a large bowl and discard the skins. Too the squash, add and combine the egg, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Cover the mixture with the flour and work it into a dough using your hands. Once complete, cover with a damp towel and rest at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes.

2. Make the gnocchi: Place the dough on a lightly floured flat surface and divide into 4 equal portions. Roll each portion into a long rope, about 3/4-inch thick. Cut each rope crosswise into pieces 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch long. If not using immediately, freeze on a floured sheet tray.

3. Cook and finish the dish: Bring a well salted pot of at least 4 quarts to a boil over high heat. Add the gnocchi and boil until they float to the top. Drain and set aside. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter until the foam subsides and the butter turns an amber color and releases a nutty aroma, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add the shallots, vinegar and sage, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine. Add the gnocchi and toss to combine. and heat through. Serve in warmed bowls and garnish with fresh sage and parmesan cheese.


If I remember correctly, my dish from last year was one of the most balanced I had consumed in a long time, hitting all the notes, despite my problems documenting the occasion: sweet, savory, salty, and sour. This dish was no different but they key is the well seasoned brown butter. If you're interested in the prior photo I've published, you can view it here.

In other news, I can't speak highly enough of Isabel, the founder of the #SundaySupper Movement and Anne of Webicurean who I had the pleasure of meeting in person a couple of weeks ago over dinner when Isabel was in town on business. Anne and I are local. Mrs. Stuntman and our daughter also attended and left the meeting with a better understanding why this movement has attracted so many participants.

From, left to right, me, Isabel and Anne.

Other Sunday Supper Participants

And finally, please check out this week's other Sunday Supper contributors:

Sunday Supper Movement

Breakfasts and Breads
Appetizers, Starters, and Condiments
Soups, Sandwiches, and Salads
Main Dishes
Side Dishes
Wine Pairing Recommendations for Squashin' Winter #SundaySupper from Enofylz Wine Blog

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET.  Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.


  1. Lovely dish DB! Brown butter gets me every time and so does balsamic. This is giving me the nudge to make gnocchi for the first time.

  2. This gnocchi looks and sounds just fabulous. I can't wait to try this recipe. I love meeting you and your beautiful family. It meant the world to me that you and Anne joined me for dinner. Thank you for a beautiful evening.

  3. What a clever use of squash to make gnocchi. I am always excited to read about your experiments. I bet this one is delish!

  4. Your gnocchi looks great! For the first #SundaySupper I made butternut squash gnocchi and it didn't turn out great but still good, yours looks just perfect!!

  5. Your gnocchi sounds delicious. I have only attempted making my own once and it took me most of the day haha, but it was so good. Love this picture with Anne and Isabel.

  6. This is perfection! Emeril has some terrific recipes. Love what you have done with this one! Tonight I'm dining with John Besh. He has a new cookbook out called Cooking from the heart with a great gnocchi recipe as well! Happy Sunday! #30AEATS

  7. I LOVE homemade gnocchi!!! I attended a pasta making class a while back and loved it! This looks so good and love the balsamic browned butter?! yumm! and how awesome that you got to meet Isabel! Very cool!!!

  8. That's so much fun that you three got to spend some time together "in real life"! And I love the sound of your gnocchi - and now I want to make a batch with squash (something I've never done, but am aching to do). Brown butter is the perfect complement. :)

  9. I think this dish sounds like perfection! I have homemade gnocchi on my kitchen bucket list, and this is just the right one for me!

  10. I love this dish, so much love went into it. And I hear you on the photography, I have a really hard time capturing what I want to capture.

  11. How fun that you got to meet Isabel and Anne!!! And I must say that your gnocchi sounds simply amazing...what a gourmet dish!

  12. I love fresh sage with squash, what a gorgeous looking recipe!!!

  13. Looks delicious... I'd have to hire you to make it though!

  14. I haven't made gnocchi in years, and with browned butter: to. die. for. Love this recipe!

  15. I've only ever made gnocchi with potatoes, sweet and regular, but why not butternut squash? Sounds wonderful, DB, especially with the browned butter! Your first photo wasn't bad, but I do think the lighting on the current one is better. I'd call this dish a success all around!

  16. I've totally got to start making my own gnocchi. Love the addition of the squash, and that brown butter sauce? Yummmmmm.

  17. This looks so good and flavorful. Never made my own gnocchi. I've always considered it a feat which I have yet to accomplish. Nice pic with #SS friends :)

  18. This looks so good and full of flavor. never made my own gnocchi. Always considered it a feat which I have yet to accomplish ! Nice #SS friend pic :)

  19. Gnocchi is one of my absolute favorites! It is really fun to make (although messy!). All of the flavors in this are so perfect for this time of year, thank you for sharing!

  20. Oh I love Gnocchi but never tried making them at home.Love the butternut squash in there.Looks absolutely delicious with the brown butter sauce :)

  21. Love everything about this dish - gnocchi, balsamic brown butter sauce, totally in love with this. Perhaps we should get together for Bay Area blogger holiday party, I think it will be fun!

  22. We've made pumpkin gnocchi, but I can just imagine how incredible the sweet butternut squash would be. Time to make gnocci again! Thanks for the inspiration!

  23. I love gnocchi so much but the idea of butternut squash squash sounds even more incredible. This is going to be a must try for me

  24. Yummm! I have always wanted to make gnocchi but have been too scared to try it!

  25. I love gnocchi these look sooo good DL!

  26. I think your photos are fine! At least they made me crave for your dish so I think they are working their magic!
    I need to try to make this dish if I have some time this weekend.

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    Cassandra | Backtofive

  27. That's so awesome you got to hang out with Isabel and Anne! Great photo of the three of you. That must've been a fun night of eating and talking about food (my favourite activities). Can you believe that until a few months ago, I thought I didn't like gnocchi? I chalk it up to a bad experience where I ate super dense, gummy gnocchi and just assumed that it was supposed to be that way. Recently, I tried it again and it was the complete opposite - so light, fluffy and deliciously flavoured. This looks delicious and I loved the butternut squash and browned butter aspects. Fabulous recipe, DB!


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