Kohlman: Find a home for zucchini in this sausage and gnocchi skillet

This is one of my favourite recipes for cooking zucchini. Their mild flavour pairs well with the sausage, tomatoes and heaps of basil.

Article content

I really love these slow and steady August days.

Advertisement

Article content

This is the point of summer when I’m savouring every detail, every day. I’m thoroughly enjoying ice cream on the patio as I watch dragonflies swoop under the trees, hoping to have a mosquito or two for lunch. In the evening, I love how the warm breeze moves the curtains, just so. The other night I fell asleep to the sound of thunder rumbling in the distance, and I’m almost certain there was a smile on my face.

And, most importantly, I’m eating all of the delicious things.

There is so much glorious vegetable and fruit abundance right now that it’s almost overwhelming. I’m gorging on peas and beans, simmered just until tender then swaddled in a good amount of butter, with just salt, pepper, and fresh dill for seasoning. New potatoes get the same treatment, their tender flesh collapsing out of their paper-thin skins. Verdant bunches of chard and kale always come home with me, as do spiky heads of kohlrabi and bags of cucumbers.

Beets, and their tops, get turned into borscht. Cherries, both sweet and sour, are baked into flaky free-form galettes, while raspberries are eaten as is, with a drizzle of cream and the lightest touch of sugar. Corn on the cob is one of the best things about summer. Full stop. And then there are the peaches, often consumed while standing over a sink, juices dripping down the chin but who cares? Tomatoes, oh the tomatoes, are what I live for the most. I’ll arrange thick rounds on a lightly toasted slice of sourdough just kissed with mayo. Add a flicker of flaky salt and it is the lunch I have on repeat. For anyone who loves food, this is the best time of the year. Savour it all, while you can.

Advertisement

Article content

Garlic sausage and gnocchi skillet dinner
Garlic sausage and gnocchi skillet dinner Photo by Renee Kohlman /Supplied photo

Speaking of delicious things, this simple skillet dinner is right up there. I always have packages of gnocchi in my pantry as it makes such tasty and quick dinners. Sure, you can make your own, but I like a good kitchen shortcut too.

This is also one of my favourite recipes for cooking zucchini. You likely have some sitting in the fridge and don’t know what to do with them. Consider this a public service announcement! Their mild flavour pairs well with the sausage, tomatoes and heaps of basil.

When it comes to the sausage, use your favourite brand of garlic sausage. You could also use fresh Italian or Chorizo sausage squeezed out of its casings and browned in the skillet before the other ingredients are added. But, I like the smokey flavour of good garlic sausage so that’s what I use here. I cook slices of the sausage in a skillet until there are some crispy bits (everyone loves crispy bits!) and oh man, the smell from the skillet is heavenly.

After the sausage has browned, I stir in those sweet-as-candy cherry tomatoes, and zucchini, as well as onions and garlic. The tomatoes break down and release their juices and the smell radiating from the stove is so good! The gnocchi joins the party, as well as a good amount of basil.

Freshly grated Parmesan is a must, as is the final drizzle of olive oil. It’s so simple, and so good. This is a delicious summer meal that takes less than 30 minutes from the stove to the table, leaving you precious time to savour the rest of your summer days as you see fit.

Advertisement

Article content

Garlic sausage and gnocchi skillet dinner
Garlic sausage and gnocchi skillet dinner Photo by Renee Kohlman /Supplied photo

Garlic Sausage and Gnocchi Skillet Dinner

300 g garlic sausage

1 lb. package of gnocchi

3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

2 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

2 medium zucchini, sliced into 1/2-inch thick pieces

1 small onion, sliced

2 garlic cloves, minced

salt and pepper

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Put a large pot of salted water on to boil over medium-high heat. Add the gnocchi and cook according to package directions. Drain and return to the pot. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp of olive oil.

2. Slice the garlic sausage into 1/4-inch thick pieces. You may have to remove some of the casing if it’s too thick. Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 Tbsp of olive oil. Cook the sausage slices until golden and crispy, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, zucchini, onion, and garlic. Add generous pinches of salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes until the tomatoes are blistered and release their juices, and the zucchini is softened.

4. Stir in the cooked gnocchi and cook for another 2 minutes. Stir in the chopped basil and season to taste with salt and pepper.

5. Divide into bowls and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese and drizzle with olive oil. Makes 4 servings.

Garlic sausage and gnocchi skillet dinner
Garlic sausage and gnocchi skillet dinner Photo by Renee Kohlman /Supplied photo

The news seems to be flying at us faster all the time. From COVID-19 updates to politics and crime and everything in between, it can be hard to keep up. With that in mind, the Saskatoon StarPhoenix has created an Afternoon Headlines newsletter that can be delivered daily to your inbox to help make sure you are up to date with the most vital news of the day. Click here to subscribe.

Advertisement

Comments

Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

Previous post Throwback Thursday: Steak & kidney pie
Next post Area leaders sq. off in Cooking for a Bring about