Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

There are too many words in this post title. I’ve made peace with that fact. (It’s just that THEY’RE ALL IMPORTANT, you know? [P.S. I compromised and left “cilantro” out of the title. But that’s in there too, guys. And it’s important. I also pan-fried the gnocchi, but I think the photos say that clearly enough. Plus you regular readers know I ALWAYS pan-fry my gnocchi and ravioli, so that’s probably just assumed at this point. Do you like it when parenthetical text makes up most of a paragraph? I do. It’s kind of like the sidebar of the blog world.])

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

I sang the praises of the kabocha squash last week when I made these doughnuts, and now I’d like to talk about using it in savory dishes. Truth be told, as wonderful as kabocha is in desserts (better than pumpkin, dare I say?), I always gravitate towards its savory applications. Its sweetness is the perfect complement to dishes with a bit of heat, my favorites being things like soups and curries. So when I started thinking about a kabocha pasta dish, my mind wandered to a weird “fusion” place. And before I knew it, there was curry powder in my gnocchi.

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi

Admittedly, I wasn’t too sure about this decision. I mean, curry powder IN pasta? But it seemed meant to be, since the idea entered my brain and then I remembered that I had jars of yummy curry powder and Sichuan sea salt that I received from Reese and Mark at Season With Spice not too long ago. Again, if you’re a regular reader, you might remember my SWS goodie binge from the summer. You may have also seen me put Sichuan sea salt in peanut butter cups over at Food52 recently. (SIDEBAR: I love love love that Sichuan sea salt. As soon as it arrived, I popped open the jar and straight-up ate some.)


Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi

And so, both seemingly unusual spices went into my gnocchi. To keep the flavors grounded in some sort of sense, I decided on a spicy coconut sauce, made tangy by some delicious crème fraîche from Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery. Plus some roasted cauliflower, because, well, roasted cauliflower is tops. And cilantro seemed like the best herb to tie everything together. Despite the fact that the dough smelled delicious and the flavors worked in my head, I really wasn’t sure how it would all turn out. So when I finally sat down and tasted it, I was surprised and thrilled to discover that it was absolutely, indisputably, freakin’ awesome.

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

So take it from me: this is a fusion that works. Go ahead and put some curry powder in your pasta dough. Seriously.

ALSO, I wanted to give you all a heads up on some exciting stuff happening next month. I was asked to put together a couple crème fraîche recipes for Vermont Butter & Cheese Creamery, so those will be going up here and on the VTB&CC website in the last week of November! I’m sharing the spotlight with Christine of Cook the Story, Samantha of Sweet Remedy, and Angela of Seasonal & Savory, and we’ll all be hosting giveaways! I’m psyched, especially because I have two REALLY awesome recipes lined up. I won’t spoil the surprise, but I will say that one is a crumb cake that will melt your brain, and the other utilizes a sauce very similar to this one, but in a fashion that would make for an amazing Thanksgiving side dish. I know, it’s cutting it close as far as planning goes, but you should just buy some sweet potatoes and trust me. For real.

Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

P.S. I took way too many pictures, so it’s time for a photo overload!

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

(gnocchi adapted from this recipe, which was originally adapted from Foodess)

serves: 2 (plus some gnocchi leftover to freeze)

For the gnocchi dough:
1 cup kabocha purée
1/3 cup freshly grated pecorino romano cheese, pulsed in a food processor until finely chopped
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (plus more, as needed)
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 tsp Sichuan Pepper Sea Salt
3/4 tsp Sweet & Spicy Curry Powder

Combine all ingredients together and then knead until a smooth dough forms.

Cut dough into four pieces, then roll one piece into a rope approximately 12 inches long. Cut into 16 pieces, and the shape each piece with a gnocchi board or a fork. Repeat with remaining three sections of dough.

For any gnocchi you won’t use right away, freeze them on a baking sheet and then store in a freezer-safe bag or container.

For the roasted cauliflower:
half a medium to large head of cauliflower, cut into florets
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss cauliflower with olive oil and salt and arrange in a baking dish. Let roast for 30–40 minutes, or until cauliflower are nicely browned on the edges.

For the sauce:
1/2 cup coconut milk
heaping 1/4 cup crème fraîche
2 tsp sriracha
minced cilantro (plus more for garnish)

Combine coconut milk, crème fraîche, and sriracha in a small saucepan. Heat over medium-low, whisking to remove any lumps in the coconut milk. When warm, set aside and stir in cilantro.

For the dish:
all of the above
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tbsp butter

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add gnocchi and let cook until puffy and floating (around 3–5 minutes if using fresh pasta, around 8–10 minutes if frozen).

While gnocchi is boiling, warm butter in a skillet or saucepan over medium heat. When sizzling, add garlic, then add cooked gnocchi from the pot of water. Saute until gnocchi are nicely browned.

Serve with roasted cauliflower and top with sriracha-coconut crème fraîche. Garnish with extra cilantro.

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche

Curry-Spiced Kabocha Gnocchi with Roasted Cauliflower & Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraîche


    • says

      Thanks, Beth! I’m curious to know what your Italian friends and family think of them. :) (I could see how curry powder in pasta might seem a little blasphemous to some Italians, but I think tasting it could change their minds!)

  1. says

    stop, just stop, i am going to ruin my computer with all the drool. i could look at these pictures forever. i have been craving gnocchi for what seems like forever now. i *almost* bought some at the store yesterday but restrained myself because homemade is ALWAYS better. i might have to try this with gluten free flour for my gluten free man… or maybe i’ll just use regular flour so i can have it ALL TO MYSELF.

    • says

      Hehe! You know, I bet these would work super well with gluten-free flour, since the kabocha puree and the egg yolk do a pretty good job of binding stuff together. And you could always throw an extra yolk in there and decrease the puree ever so slightly to ensure it would work. :)

  2. says

    Gosh, look at those pudgy little gnocchi. They’re so cute and now I want a gnocchi paddle! In truth, I’ve never made gnocchi before. I think I was turned off from it after a friend and I shared a HUGE plateful completely smothered in a heavy gorgonzola sauce. It was the most homogeneously heavy meal I’d ever had. Ugh, too too too much starch and cheese and… my mouth’s feeling greasy just thinking about it. But I know gnocchi can be good, and looking at this lovely, varied dish, makes me want to give it a try.

    Actually, it’s kind of funny because I was planning on posting, hopefully sometime soon, something very similar, involving roasted cauliflower, cilantro, and curry spices! We must be on the same wavelength or something. Or maybe you’re rubbing off on me! Not a bad thing at all. :)

    • says

      Oh man, yup, I totally know that decadent gnocchi overload. (Pretty much the same thing happened to me the first time I ever had them. Crazy overwhelming cheesy cream sauce. I wanted to nap for days afterward.) I think that’s why I’m drawn to making them with anything that isn’t a potato now!

      And holy freakin moly — DYING over those agnolotti! We are totally on the same wavelength, and it is awesome. (And you’re inspiring me to make agnolotti, which I’ve been wanting to do because they’re so dang cute. [It’s those darn piping bags that discourage me. I need to get over that. Hellloooo ziploc bag + pair of scissors!])

  3. says

    The (spicy, crusty, orangey-kabocha) gnocchi, the roasted cauliflower and the (COCONUT) creme fraiche sauce, the {beautiful} photography and the [parenthetical] text …everything here is lovely to see and read [:-))} you’ve got me going here]!

  4. says

    I’m coming over for dinner now, mkay? These look insanely good, Carey – you’ve outdone yourself! I can’t even imagine how good that bowl of crispy, spicy gnocchi tastes. And that gnocchi paddle is a revelation. It’s the fork thing that’s stopped me from making gnocchi for so many years – I suck at it. No more! Also, I love Foodess so very much. It makes me happy that these gnocchi are adapted from her. :)

    • says

      YES. I wish we didn’t live on other sides of the country!

      And omg, so I didn’t even understand how to make gnocchi until I finally watched that video on shaping them with the board. (I used to just smush them with a fork and be like, “huh, that looks like crap……whatever.”) :P

  5. says

    Gah, I friggin love your recipes!! And your gnocchi. They freeze for forever and make rainy day dinners the greatest. YUM. What a beautiful meal you’ve created! I’ve only used kabocha once, in a curry. Squash and curry are a match made in heaven!

    • says

      Thanks, Brianne! :D 100% agree on gnocchi being the best unearthed-from-the-freezer rainy day dinner, and also on the squash + curry combo. (At the risk of overdoing it on the kabocha love, I might also have to post my favorite ever kabocha curry recipe this month! I made it for my parents last week [housesitting again], and again last night for my new……guy friend. He can be kind of a picky weirdo when it comes to food, but he had seconds and thirds, so it seems to be as good as I think it is. [He also got to eat this gnocchi meal with me. His assessment was something to the effect of, “wow, that’s really good — I’m surprised.”]) ;)

  6. says

    OMG this is stunning! I have had a few epic gnocchi fails and have been wanting to try again so will give this a go. I’ve always been a little dubious about the Indian spices + pasta combo but you make this sound and look amazing! Lovely pics :-)

    • says

      I’ve got a few gnocchi mishaps under my belt as well. :) It’s definitely a dough that you get a feel for after you’ve made it a few times, and experienced both failure and success!

  7. says

    Gorgeous gnocchi! I made a pumpkin gnocchi back when my blog was just a baby, but would never have had the guts to pull off flavors like this. I’ve been secretly yearning for the sweetness of squash with the complexity of curry, and you made it happen in such a creative way — wish I had a big bowl of it for dinner tonight!

  8. says

    Hi Carey, that is a seriously long title:) Funny that you mentioned about that. Reese always wants a long title, but I’m all about conciseness. Must be one of those Venus/Mars things…

    We’ll have to try curry powder in pasta. We’ve been adding it in soups and veggie dishes (it’s great on cauliflower, as you’ve done here), so no reason to stop experimenting.

    Love the idea of sichuan salt in the peanut butter cups. Just checked out your recipe at Food 52, and that’s definitely on my list for the holiday season.

    Amazing shots as always, Carey. You have a great eye for food photography.

    Mark & Reese

    • says

      Hehe! Post titles are always a bit of an internal battle with the editor in me, who knows they should be much shorter. :)

      I’ve been wanting to try roasting a whole cauliflower with some sort of rub using the curry powder as a base. I am sure it would be awesome. And the sichian salt was SO awesome in the peanut butter cups. They’re all gone now, and I am sad.

      I’ve also got a bitters project planned for my remaining black cardamom pods! :D

  9. says

    Love! I’ve never made my own gnocchi and this looks like a wonderful place to start. I’m also totally intrigued by the unique flavor profile. Such a wonderful recipe with totally gorgeous images!

    • says

      Thanks, Elizabeth! I hadn’t made a (successful) batch of gnocchi until last fall, and now it’s one of my favorite types of pasta to make. Especially with non-potato-y bases and unique flavors accompanying it. :)

    • says

      Thank you, Cecilia! The paddle really does make a big difference. And it’s small enough to stow away in a drawer, so it’ll practically feel like you didn’t add to your kitchen collection. :)

  10. says

    I have many thoughts while reading this post Carey. The first is Oh Man how am I going to choose which photograph to Pin because they get more and more beautiful as I scroll down. The second thought is I really hope that your camera is as crusted in food as mine, lol. ‘Cuz if it’s not, I don’t know how you do it. Lol. This is amazing and my mouth is watering.

    • says

      Bwahaha! Dude, my poor camera is so covered in food gunk. There are some flour-y bits in the focusing ring of my 50mm that will probably be one with the lens forever. :P

  11. says

    This looks incredible! I never would’ve thought of putting curry powder into my gnocchi but I can imagine how good it’d be with the creme fraiche and those amazing toasted nuts. Yum. Definitely bookmarking this recipe! x

  12. Meghan says

    Seasons ‘s greetings!

    I’m making this for my dad’s 60th birthday dinner. It’s gonna be like 8 courses of crazy.

    Quick q: What goes into “kabocha purée” if I choose to make it from scratch? I can’t find a definitive answer anywhere.

    Much obliged!


  1. […] It’s not everyday that a food blogger cops to starting to eat meat again while contemplating the fate of their site. But Carey Nershi makes it all look so damn good, from DIY cocktail syrups to global fusion dishes using ingredients from her Burlington, Vermont homebase.Try This: Curry-Spiced Gnocchi With Roasted Cauliflower and Sriracha-Coconut Crème Fraiche […]

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