Twice I have made this and twice we've ooohhhhd and aaaahhhd over it so I thought it was time to throw it up here. The funny thing about gnocchi is it was probably my least favorite food while living in Uruguay as an LDS missionary. When I came home, I was glad to never eat it again. So when I told my husband, the first time I made this, what we were eating, he responded that gnocchi was the least likely thing he thought I'd ever make!
Well, thanks to Pinterest and all the other lovely food bloggers I kept seeing these amazing pictures and recipes for gnocchi. I figured it was time to try it again. I'm so happy this was the first thing I made. The sauce is pretty much everything because the gnocchi doesn't have much flavor, and it's so incredibly flavorful while being super simple at the same time. Although the gnocchi itself doesn't have much flavor, it lends great texture; it's soft and smooth, almost like biting into a marshmallow. The cheese melted over the top, with those little bits of crispy brown parts just puts it over the top!
for the sauce:
2-3 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 shallot, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 large tomatoes, preferably garden ripened, roughly chopped
Pinch of sugar
Generous handful of fresh basil, chiffonde
Salt and pepper, to taste
8oz. Package gnocchi
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium high heat. Add shallot and cook 2-3 minutes, then garlic for another minute. Add tomatoes and half the basil and reduce to a simmer. Depending on how juicy your tomatoes are, simmer 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Mash the tomatoes as you stir, either by using a potato masher the back of a spatula. Add a pinch of sugar, salt and pepper and check for seasoning. Add salt as necessary. Remove from heat and stir in the remaining basil.
Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil. Boil gnocchi as directed. Drain and add to the pan of sauce. Stir to coat then top with mozzarella. Place under the broiler until it starts to brown, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from oven, serve immediately.
SOURCE: Sauce adapted from Iowa Girl Eats