Gnocchi with Summer Tomato Sauce

This tomato sauce is, like all the best of them, simple to execute. And as long as you make it from the best available ingredients, the pleasure the dish yields will far exceed the small effort required to put it together. The sauce is the ideal solution for once great tomatoes that have ripened past prime. Pairing it with good gnocchi takes it a few steps further. We hope you enjoy creating this delicious meal, perfectly paired with a wine selected by winemaker, Jamie Marfell. Serves 6 as an appetizer/entrée or 4 as a main course

  • 3 lb (1.5 kg) very ripe (but not mealy) heirloom tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) olive oil
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) minced onion
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) white wine
  • 1 packet good quality gnocchi
  • 2 cups basil leaves, torn
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 tbsp (60 mL) whipped butter
  • 1 cup (250 mL) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano
  1. Cut a shallow X in the bottom of each tomato, then blanch the tomatoes for 60 seconds, shock them in ice water, and peel. Quarter them and remove and discard the core and seeds. Set aside.
  2. In a sauté pan, cook the onion in the olive oil over medium heat until it becomes translucent. Stir in the garlic, and a minute later deglaze with the wine. When that is reduced to virtually nothing, add the tomatoes. Simmer for no more than 7 minutes, breaking their flesh apart with a wooden spoon as they cook. Add torn basil and season lightly.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the gnocchi. Using a spider or slotted spoon, transfer the gnocchi to the pan with the sauce.
  4. Toss, and correct seasonings. Stir in the butter, and serve generously topped with grated cheese.