My mouth is watering to look at these pictures, it is so good. This is my kind of indulgence. Sausage is an ingredient that I don’t cook with often. Not because I don’t like it, but because I love it. And here lies the problem. It’s not a secret that sausage is not the healthiest of meats. But the flavor is amazing. And when I was thinking of what to pair with butternut squash and gnocchi, I kept coming back to this.
My kids are not huge fans of butternut squash. I’m not sure why, the adults in the house love it. I can’t convince them. When parents ask me how to deal with picky eaters, one of my strategies is to change the way you present the food. If I were to just roast up butternut squash and serve it as a side, my kids would scowl at the thought of it. I don’t ever serve it like that anymore – too much wasted butternut squash. However, when I pair it with foods they like (sausage and gnocchi), they eat it. And these are kids who have sworn hatred against butternut squash.
It’s such a pretty color. Cutting up the butternut squash is literally the hardest part of this dish.
There are my little helper hands again. What’s better than getting your hands all greasy AND playing with food.
This is the color you are looking for when you bake it. It will take at least 20 minutes, longer depending on your oven or the size of your chunks. The brown is the color the bottom gets.
Easy jobs for kids. Teach them to respect a hot stove. My children are actually terrified of a hot stove, so apparently I’ve taught them well. Their hands stay exactly where they should be.
Sadly, I don’t have sage growing in my garden. I didn’t think I would use enough of it, so it’s store bought sage for me today. These are giant sage leaves.
Onions and garlic simmering away and I added a pat of butter for more richness. I did say this was an indulgent dish, right?
I added the gnocchi, sausage, butternut squash and the sage to the onions and garlic. I gently tossed it and then transferred to a pretty dish. Top with a little parm and you’ve got yourself a winner dinner!
- 1 butternut squash, but into cubes (can be as big or as small as you like)
- 16 oz fresh Italian sausage
- 1 – 16oz package gnocchi
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 Tablespoons fresh sage, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus a pinch more
- 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 220°C or 425°F
- Peel butternut squash and dice into 1/2″ cubes, place on baking sheet
- Drizzle with 2 Tablespoons olive oil and a sprinkle with a pinch of salt
- Stir to coat
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until squash is soft and starting to brown on the bottom
- Add water to a stockpot and boil gnocchi until done, rinse (if desired) and set aside
- In a large saucepan over medium high heat, add sausage and cook until done; drain and set aside
- Wipe out saucepan to remove grease and add 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- Add diced onions and sauté until soft
- Add garlic and salt and sauté for an additional minute – be watchful as to not burn the garlic
- Add butter, sage, gnocchi, sausage, and butternut squash
- Gently toss to mix all ingredients together
- Transfer to a serving dish (optional) and sprinkle with parmesan cheese