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Boyfriend thinks I am incredibly, undeniably bizarre, but there is nothing I find more Zen (and I am not a Zen kind of person…I’m a neurotic kind of person who strongly believes in multitasking) than cooking dinner for the two of us after we go to the gym.

This is not normal.  The first instinct should be: shower.  Or protein shake or Gatorade (that would be for those of you P1030533who work out more earnestly than me.  My electrolytes do not dip low enough to warrant recovery drinks of that nature) or even, gasp, water.  But not: start cooking.  Hovering over a stove and chopping things is not what one normal people generally want to do after sweating up a storm (Again, this is relative – you should not assume that I am running ten miles or power-lifting truck tires or something.  In fact, I find a half hour on the treadmill to be tedious and painful most days, but I like to eat, and when you like to eat and you don’t work out, you get fat.  Trust me.  I have extensive experience in this area. ).

But it is my favorite thing to do after the gym.  I have no idea why, and Lord knows Boyfriend won’t complain, because this usually frees him up to watch ESPN until I’ve set a plate full of food in front of him.  Am I a 50’s housewife on the inside or what?  I keep telling him not to get used to it, but then it’s Sunday morning and I’m making him pancakes and you can practically see the wheels turning in his head as he’s having the great internal argument about whether or not he should bring up the fact that while I keep telling him not to get used to it, I do keep doing it and at some point he’s going to expect it…NO. Do not speak those words to her.

Instead, he eats.

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Pan-fried Gnocchi with Chorizo

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp minced garlic

1/2 small white onion, diced

2 links of (uncooked) chorizo sausage (with jalapenos), sliced with casings removed

1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 – 3/4 cup beef stock

1/4 cup tomato sauce

Several slices of eggplant, julienned

3 – 4 cups of uncooked gnocchi

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat.  Add garlic and onion, saute until onion is translucent, then add chorizo.  Cook for 5 – 7 minutes, until the meat is cooked through.  Remove meat from the pot (and any garlic and onion that come with it), and put the gnocchi in.  Make sure the all the gnocchi is touching the pan – you want them to brown as they pan-fry.  In 2 – 3 minutes (if you’re starting with frozen gnocchi, this will obviously take an extra minute or two to make sure they heat all the way through), once the gnocchi is browned on one side, flip them and cook for another 2 – 3 minutes.  Dump gnocchi out of the pan, turn the heat down to medium and add beef stock.  Scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to infuse the flavor of the chorizo into the sauce.  Add tomato sauce and red pepper flakes, stir, then add the eggplant, chorizo/onions/garlic back in.  Cook for 3 – 4 minutes, so that the sauce heats through and the eggplant cooks.

Divide gnocchi evenly amongst two bowls, then cover evenly with sauce.

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