Buttery Gnocchi with Mushrooms and Arugula

I formulated this recipe with the intent that it could be a potential Valentine’s Day meal for my readers who are staying home with their special someone this holiday.

But, on second thought, I do not recommend this recipe for a romantic evening. It’s rich and filling. It tastes divine and you won’t be able to stop eating it. You’ll eat too much and feel like a giant bloated whale. In other words, you will not be in the mood for post-dinner romance. Instead you’ll want to put on sweatpants and drift into a food coma.

So maybe make this on February 15th? After Valentine’s Day but well before swimsuit season.

Here’s what you’ll need:

1 package of potato gnocchi (fresh or frozen)
3 cups mushrooms (about 12 ounces)
1 large sweet onion
4 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
bunch of arugula

*Note: I doubled this recipe because I like leftovers. So my photos do not accurately depict the amounts listed above.

First, bring salted water to a boil to cook the gnocchi.

While the water is heating, slice the mushrooms. Remember, mushrooms contain a lot of water so it’s best not to clean them by rinsing or soaking. Just gently rub any dirt off with a damp paper towel.

Then slice the onion.
Heat the olive oil and half the butter in a large pan.
Add the onions and the mushrooms to the hot olive oil and butter.
While the mushrooms and onions are cooking, slice the garlic cloves.
By now your water should be boiling. Add the gnocchi and cook them according to the package directions.
When the mushrooms and onions are softened (and looking delicious), add the garlic slices and thyme. Season with salt and pepper and stir to combine.

When the gnocchi are ready, drain the water but reserve about a half cup of the gnocchi cooking liquid.

Toss the drained gnocchi into the mushroom-onion mixture. Be gentle – you don’t want your gnocchi to turn into mashed potatoes.
Add the rest of the butter to the mixture.
Stir in the reserved gnocchi cooking liquid. It should create a creamy sauce with the butter and mushroom/onion juices.
To make it even creamier, stir in the Parmesan cheese. Now it’s perfect. And ready to serve.
Serve the gnocchi topped with some fresh arugula. The arugula adds a nice peppery flavor to the dish. Plus it makes it look pretty. Doesn’t that look gourmet?
Mushrooms, butter, onions, and little potato pillows. My new favorite things.

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