Thinking Thanksgiving

1 Apr

Stumped by sweet potato gnocchi…then inspired to create a bowl o’  Thanksgiving


I know, I know. It’s April. It’s spring. I am supposed to be rejoicing in the warmer weather, and longer days, and limbs being liberated from winter woolens. Truth is, spring and summer depress me. Sunshine makes me sleepy. The clingy fashions don’t fit me. Bugs are a bane. And during the dog days, the food just isn’t as fun. I suffer salads. My grill intimidates me. The fresh produce I stockpile spoils too quickly.

I am a fall and winter gal. I love long nights, and bracing cold, and crackling fires, and turtlenecks, and any excuse to use a crock pot. In the past week or so, we’ve seen unseasonable 80-degree days surrender to the return of 20-degree nights. My belly and I have loved it. A week that started out warm, and with a vernal version of pizza, wrapped with a recipe of autumn-inspired goodness in time for the revisit of cooler weather. I had picked up sweet potato-stuffed gnocchi at the supermarket, but couldn’t figure out what sort of sauce to pair with these different dumplings. Sweet potatoes made me think “Thanksgiving”, so I decided to throw in other flavors from the holiday: turkey, veggies, potatoes, gravy, dried cranberries. Turns out I overestimated the sweet potato-y-ishness of the gnocchi–I really couldn’t taste the filling much at all–but the dish was still pretty yummy (passed the meat-and-potatoes Hubby Test), and made for a quick, warming, weeknight meal.

Note to foodies and food purists: I used turkey gravy from a jar (gasp!) and frozen (not fresh) veggies (including seasoned microwaveable potatoes loaded with bad-for-you sodium…horrors!) to make this dish. Hey, I work. And as the week wears on, I get lazy and like my TV time…mmm-kay?




  • 12-16 oz. turkey breast
  • 16 oz. package of whole wheat gnocchi with sweet potato
  • Large package of frozen julienned vegetable mix (carrots, green beans)
  • Package of frozen seasoned red potatoes, prepared
  • Large jar of turkey gravy
  • Dried rosemary, to taste
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Handful of dried cranberries
  • Handful of chopped pecans


Poach turkey breasts: Put them in a large pot of water, bring water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, and cook for about 10-15 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool. Once cool enough to handle, cut the cooked breasts into 1-2″ chunks.

Prepare gnocchi per package directions. In this case, place gnocchi into large pot of water, and bring to a boil. Gnocchi are cooked when they float to the top.

Place the frozen vegetable mix in a colander. Drain gnocchi over the vegetables.

Return the vegetable-gnocchi mixture to pot. Stir in prepared potatoes and gravy, and season with rosemary and salt and pepper to taste.

Add a handful of dried cranberries. Heat through. Serve topped with chopped pecans, if desired. 


5 Responses to “Thinking Thanksgiving”

  1. Sarah April 2, 2012 at 10:12 am #

    Because you are awesome and fabulous you may enjoy Thanksgiving at any time of year you’d like! And you sure know how to enjoy it, this looks perfect Tara. I would love to sit down in front of the TV with a bowl of this. Talk about comfort food. Yummmmmm. You have some really great recipes and great ideas….

    Have a wonderful Monday and fun week!!! xoxo 🙂

    • ramblings&roasts April 2, 2012 at 10:36 am #

      Thanks, as always, Sarah! Bets to you, too.

      • ramblings&roasts April 2, 2012 at 10:38 am #

        Um, that would be BEST to you, too. Of course, my bets are always on you…for WINNING posts 🙂

  2. Sarah April 5, 2012 at 7:13 pm #

    You should now, that I am going through blogs right now, feeding my face with this dish. It’s the second time we’ve made it now. I am a very happy girl, thank you very much. If it looked a little prettier, like yours, I’d take a picture for you 🙂

    • ramblings&roasts April 6, 2012 at 1:01 pm #

      Haha! Glad you’re enjoying it. On the shopping list and menu for this weekend will be your lovely risotto recipe…can’t wait! 🙂

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