We had a few of those Pumpkin and Walnut Gnudi left in the freezer, and, while we ate some with a red pasta sauce, it’s also quite common to use gnudi in a light broth. The best part of making Gnudi in Brodo is that it makes for a light, quick meal, provided, of course, you have some leftover gnudi that you need to use.
For us, being scratchers, not only did we make the Pumpkin and Walnut Gnudi for this dish, we also made the broth. We don’t tell you how in the instructions below, but it’s quite simple. We save things like carrot peelings, the trimmings from prepping garlic and onions, the tough cores from canned tomatoes, and stems from arugula or other greens. Basically edible things that we trim away either because they’re tough, or perhaps don’t present well. Once a week, we place these trimmings in water, along with a bay leaf, maybe a few pieces of Parmesan rind, and simmer 45 minutes. Once strained, we have about 4 cups nice stock or broth, which we generally use for making soup.
We’re not sure that we’d make gnudi specifically for this soup. We’d be more likely to make the gnudi for something else, freeze them, and use the leftovers for this soup. You, we don’t know whether you’re up for making gnudi, but, if you are, we have recipes for our Pumpkin and Walnut Gnudi and Ricotta and Spinach Gnudi. Of course, you can use gnocchi, instead. Use a flavorful broth, as you don’t get much flavor from just simmering gnudi. Finally, we mark the mushrooms as optional; we put them in mainly for visual interest. Use something else (a few shreds of carrot, a bit of green onion), instead, or skip altogether.
Procedure in detail:
Cook mushrooms. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the mushrooms, sprinkle with a bit of salt, and sear for about 3 minutes so the mushrooms are completely cooked and browned in spots.
Heat stock. Add the stock along with a pinch of red pepper flake — you want to get the spiciness from the pepper into the broth — and bring to a simmer.
Season. Taste the broth, and add salt and black pepper to taste. You want a good-tasting broth and you want to season it now, so you have seasoned broth seeping into the gnudi.
Simmer gnudi. Add the gnudi and simmer for about 15 minutes, or about 5 minutes after they float to the surface. This will give them time to cook all the way through.
Serve. Distribute gnudi among bowls, scoop broth over the top, and garnish with a bit of dried basil before serving.
Delicious way to use up a few gnudi left from another meal. While the broth is nice and light, the gnudi add a bit of heft, so the soup is more filling than you might think from looking at it. And, really, it’s surprising how tasty it is, even though we only enhanced the flavors with a bit of salt and pepper (and red pepper). We’ll say four stars.