Cauliflower Gnocchi w Homemade Pistachio Pesto

One of my favorite things to do in the kitchen is to take a traditional dish and substitute/swap ingredients to put a healthy twist on it. So tonight I took a shot on this Italian classic – gnocchi. Typically a heavier dish, I swapped potatoes and all-purpose flour for cauliflower. While the texture and consistency wasn’t as light and dough-y as traditional gnocchi, it was a definite “do-again” dish. Don’t be intimidated – homemade gnocchi is relatively easy and quick to make (seriously).

I’m a big fan of Caulipower pizza crust, so when I stumbled upon their cauliflower-based baking flour my mind immediately started thinking of creative ways I could incorporate this into my next recipe. However, if you’re looking for an easier (and cheaper) alternative, check out Trader Joe’s frozen cauliflower gnocchi. Caulipower baking flour costs ~$9.99 per bag, but you can get this pre-made alternative for $2.69 per bag.

Regardless of which gnocchi variety you choose, this homemade pistachio pesto is a must try. And sticking with the theme here, also quick and easy to make! Seriously. Just throw all of the ingredients in a small food processor. Cooking for one? Freeze the extra pesto in ice cube trays for individual sized servings for later.

Looking for a side to accompany this dish? I opted for a super light and refreshing arugula salad with tricolor tomatoes, thinly sliced red onion and fresh mozzarella. Finish with a squeeze of lemon, drizzle of EVOO and Himalayan salt + fresh ground pepper. This salad was the perfect compliment to the bold flavors in the gnocchi.

Ingredients:

1 medium head of cauliflower

1.5 cups of Caulipower cauliflower-based baking mix

1 egg

1 cup basil

2 garlic cloves

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

1/4 cup EVOO

3 tablespoons Vegan parmesan

Handful shelled pistachios (optional)

Roasted red pepper flakes

Himalayan sea salt

Fresh ground pepper

Directions:

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of EVOO and add pine nuts. Toast until light golden color.
  2. Add basil, garlic cloves, pine nuts, EVOO, and pistachios to small food processor. Season w roasted red pepper flakes, Himalayan sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.
  3. Steam 1 medium head of cauliflower until soft. Add steamed cauliflower to food processor and pulse until mashed. Add Caulipower baking mix, one egg and vegan parmesan.
  4. Knead mixture. Roll into rope and cut into half-inch pieces.
  5. Bring pot of water to boil. Drop in gnocchi and cook for 3-5 minutes (or until gnocchi rise to the top). Drain cauliflower.
  6. Toss cauliflower gently in pan with pesto on low heat for 3 minutes (or until pesto is warm and gnocchi turns a light golden color).

Enjoy!

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