I’ve had this recipe in my ‘pile’ for ages and I borrowed it from the Food Network Magazine – it’s a great weeknight meal and I’m pretty sure I’m going to have to serve gnocchi more often – especially roasted gnocchi. Luckily there was some leftover!
6–10 slices of bacon, chopped AND 4 to 6 cloves of garlic, minced
2 lbs. extra lean ground beef
2 T. brandy (or red wine) AND 1 small red onion, chopped
3 medium carrots AND 2 celery stalks, all diced
1 T. tomato paste (also works to use the whole can) AND 1/2 t. freshly ground pepper
1 can (14 oz/398 mL) diced tomatoes AND 1 c. chicken broth
2, 1-inch thick strips of orange peel
2/3 c. niçoise olives, pitted and chopped (I have also used kalamata)
1 package (500 g) gnocchi (if boiling) – I’d double the amount if roasting (our new favorite thing to do!)
plain Greek yogurt for serving, especially if you choose to roast your gnocchi
Heat a bit of oil in a large skillet and cook the bacon and garlic until the bacon has started to brown and then add in the ground beef. Cook, stir and break up the beef for about 5 minutes, then add in the brandy, onion, carrots, celery and tomato paste and cook for another 5 minutes or so until the vegetables soften.
Stir in the tomatoes, broth, orange peel and olives, bring the mixture to a simmer, lower the heat, cover it up and allow it to cook for 15 to 20 minutes. As this is simmering bring a large pot of salted water to boil for the gnocchi, or preheat the oven to 400 for roasting.
Uncover the skillet, remove the orange peel, and turn the heat up a bit to reduce the liquid and thicken up the sauce while the gnocchi is cooking. Boil the gnocchi according to the package directions (usually until just one floats to the top, this should take 1 to 3 minutes – do not overcook them!), then drain the gnocchi and add them all into the beef mixture. If roasting, toss on a parchment lined baking sheet with a bit of olive oil and salt and pepper and roast for about a half hour, taking out to stir at least once, until some are a bit browned and crispy. Roasted gnocchi should be crisp/chewy on the outside and soft in the middles…very similar to perogies! Toss the (boiled) gnocchi with the sauce and you have dinner ready, or serve the roasted gnocchi alongside the sauce. This dish makes me think of Mediterranean bolognaise – enjoy!
- Category: Ground Beef, Pasta