Many cultures greet the New Year with a feast that symbolically sets the table for the year ahead. As they sit down to traditional dishes, people often try to metaphorically eat their hopes and goals for the coming year.
In Italy, lentils are served on New Year’s Eve after midnight. The lentils, with their cone-like shape, represent luck and prosperity. The dish is often served with cotechino, a spicy pork sausage, which signifies the fat or bounty of the land.
In today’s recipe, we bring the Italian tradition back to our tables with a twist. Red lentils couscous transformed into fluffy gnocchi and stuffed with the decadent cotechino.
Here is how to prepare it:
- Preparation: 10 minutes + the cooking time of the cotechino
- Cooking: 5/6 minutes
- Portions: 2/3 people
Recipe by Simona Novarini
- 250 ml of water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
- 150 grams of Martino Lentils Couscous
- 100 grams of wheat flour 00
- 3 slices of cotechino
- 50 grams of butter
- 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary
Hydrate the Couscous:
In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, pour 20 ml of water, add a pinch of salt and one teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil. Bring to a simmer.
Turn off the heat and pour evenly 200 grams of Martino Lentils Couscous. Cover with a lid and let the couscous absorb all the water slowly for about 4-5 minutes. After the necessary time, fluff the couscous with the help of a fork.
Prepare the cotechino
Reheat the cotechino according to the instruction in the package. When ready cut three slices and then dice them into small cubes. We suggest that you buy pre-cooked cotechino, otherwise the raw one needs around 2 hours of slow boiling to be ready.
Prepare the gnocchi mixture
In a mixing bowl add the hydrated lentils couscous. Pour 100 grams of wheat flour and knead them well with your hands to obtain a homogeneous mixture.
Shape and fill the gnocchi
Take a small amount of your couscous dough and flatten it with your hands. Add a few cubes of cotechino in the center and close the dough with your fingers. Now with the dough obtained of couscous taken out of the portions, flatten them with your fingers. Make sure to enclose the filling well.
Cooking the gnocchi
In a saucepan add water and salt and bring to a boil. Toss the gnocchi inside and let them cook until they come up to the surface. Drain them with the help of a skimmer.
Prepare the rosemary butter
In a non-stick pan add 50 grams of butter and let it fry for a couple of minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary. Make sure to not overcook the butter. If the color becomes dark the taste will change. You can also add garlic in the butter if you want, it will add extra aroma to your dish.
Place the drained gnocchi in a serving dish. Season with the rosemary butter and serve warm.
If you want to save the gnocchi for later or another day you can freeze them and store them in a bag for food for a couple of months. Dip them in boiling salted water without defrosting when you want to cook them.
Are you in the mood for some Italian homemade flavor? Toss the Martino Couscous gnocchi filled with the delicious cotechino sausage in a saucepan, drizzle them with rosemary butter and serve with and a glass of wine. Enjoy and subscribe to the newsletter to receive more traditional Italian recipes directly in your inbox!
Homemade couscous gnocchi can make a delicious and healthy dish for the whole family ready in just 10 minutes. As they cook more quickly than traditional pasta, gnocchi is a great meal idea for weeknights. Paired with different sauces and seasonings gnocchi are so versatile you will love them. And the mouthwatering addition of the cotechino filling will leave you only wanting for more. We urge you to give this recipe a try and even take it a step further by adding your own unique twist!