Easy Dinner Recipes for Meatless Monday
It’s not easy to put a healthy, delicious dinner on the table for two people in under half an hour. I have become a huge fan of Trader Joe’s in the past few years, the company has very contemporary options, and the quality is quite good, and the price is reasonable and the best part the food is delicious!
In the past few years, cauliflower has been used for lots of different things from pizza crusts, wraps, to tater tot alternatives. Cauliflower is one of the few non-green vegetables that are high in nutrition. Cauliflower is rich in vitamins and minerals as well as phytonutrients and antioxidants, which can prohibit the growth of free radicals. Cauliflower is high in fiber, so it is excellent for weight loss and colon health, not to mention cauliflower has a high-water content, so it is a very hydrating vegetable. With all of that said, the flavor of cauliflower is very mild so it can be easily substituted into food, giving it a higher nutrition value without excessive calories or carbohydrates.
I have purchased the Trader Joe’s Ready-Made Cauliflower Pizza crust which is so delicious and cuts out a lot of prep work. Recently I tried the Margarita Pizza on Cauliflower crust, and it was delicious as well. https://www.traderjoes.com/digin/post/cauliflower-pizza-crustI highly recommend either product, I typically make them myself from scratch, and it is time-consuming and expensive. I love to cook, so I am not so much about making the task easier. Today I purchased from the freezer section where the vegetables are located, I saw a new item, Cauliflower Gnocchi.
I adore tender gnocchi, I have made them before with pumpkin, and they are very time consuming, fun for a big holiday dinner, but too much work for dinner. The ingredient label listed cauliflower as the first ingredient, there is no wheat flour they use cassava flour and potato starch to make them. I was inspired, this sounded like a delicious wheat free pasta that could be nutritious! Now for the sauce, I found in the refrigerator section a vegan kale pesto which seemed super good for you, it too was reasonably priced.
I cooked the gnocchi in chicken stock to add flavor, you could easily just use water, I adore the flavor the stock adds to pasta, when the gnocchi was cooked al dente, I drained them. The cheese blend I used for this recipe I have been buying at Publix, you could easily use the same amount of just Parmesan cheese, I just love this blend for the consistency.
Pesto Cream Cauliflower Gnocchi
1 bag Cauliflower Gnocchi, frozen
4 cups water or chicken stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves of fresh garlic minced
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup shredded cheese blend( or shredded parmesan cheese)
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
½ cup pesto ( I used the Trader Joe’s Kale Pesto)
In a large sauce pan, bring the chicken stock to a boil over medium high heat.
When the stock comes to a. boil add the frozen gnocchi and cook till they begin to float, approximately 5- 6 minutes.
Strain the gnocchi and let rest. Use the same sauce pan to make the sauce.
Add the oil and let heat for 2 minutes over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and let it cook without browning for several minutes.
Pour in the cream and let it come to a simmer, then remove the pan from the heat completely.
Stir in the cheese till dissolved.
Add the gnocchi, and season with salt and pepper.
Stir in the pesto.
Taste for additional salt or pepper and serve.
This was a very delicious dish. The cauliflower and the kale pesto added flavor and added nutritional value. I think even your fussiest eaters will be pleased with this as a meatless meal or a tasty side dish.