Pesto is the Best-o

Updated: Jan 28

Hello everyone. Welcome back to Dash of Donnie, I’m your lovely head chef Donnie Eniram, alongside my charming co-host Eve Romano. I can’t believe it's been a year since we’ve last been together. We’ve missed you guys so much. Well, it feels good to be back, and we're starting this year off with a dish Eve requested: Crispy Gnocchi with a Basil Pesto sauce. Now, with this being out of my comfort zone, this dish was led by Eve this time, with me working as the co-chef. For those who don't know gnocchi (pronounce nyow·kee) is an Italian, potato-based, styled dumpling. For this recipe though rather than its soft chewy taste this time, it has a crispy crunchy outer shell and soft chewy middle. To help further the flavor it's coated in a savory aromatic pesto sauce. Pesto is an Italian sauce consisting of olive oil, garlic, European pine nuts, coarse salt, basil leaves, and some sort of hard cheese with the addition of basil leaves in this case. This sauce is a little on the heavy side due to the high-fat content but it adds so much flavor nonetheless.

We had a few troubles frying the gnocchi at first but after a while, we got the hang of it. It's quite a simple recipe otherwise and you shouldn't have much trouble. This dish is best served fresh but, of course, you can store it in an airtight container for about a week. Even though we don't have a video for this recipe we still hope you enjoy making this Italian recipe yourself. With that said let's get cooking.

Crispy Gnocchi in Basil Pesto

Prep time: 10 min

Cook Time: 15 min

Total Time 25 min

Servings: 4


Basil pesto sauce:

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed

  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 lb package potato gnocchi

  • Parmesan cheese, for serving


Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor or blender and pulse until coarsely chopped. With the machine running, slowly add the olive oil and process until smooth. Add the cheese and pulse until combined. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.

Cook the gnocchi according to package instructions. Drain completely. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the gnocchi in a single layer and cook, undisturbed, until golden and crisp, about 3-4 minutes. Turn the gnocchi and cook, turning occasionally, until golden and crisp, about 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in ¼ to ⅓ cup of the pesto. You might have leftover pesto. Serve warm and garnish with Parmesan cheese, if desired.

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