Pumpkin Gnocchi in Browned Butter Sauce; Marrakesh contrasts

This Gnocchi, made with pumpkin rather than the more traditional potato, is a lovely golden color with the delicate flavor of winter squash.

Finish simply, with browned butter and a few herbs.

It makes a lovely side dish for fall and is incredibly easy to do.

You can buy pumpkin purée – just make sure that pumpkin is the only ingredient; or make your own using pumpkin or butternut squash or you favorite winter squash. I cut the pumpkin or squash into large pieces and roast, covered with foil, until very tender. Then mash or purée in a blender or food processor.

Pumpkin Gnocchi in Browned Butter Sauce

Total time: 60 minutes


  • Gnocchi:
  • 1 cup pumpkin or butternut squash purée
  • 1 – 2 cups flour
  • Sauce:
  • 1 1/2 tbs butter
  • 1 tbs good olive oil
  • 1 tsp herbes de Provence
  • black pepper
  • sea salt

Pumpkin Gnocchi


  • Gnocchi:
  • Mix the pumpkin with 1 cup of the flour; using a wooden spoon or large fork to start.  As it comes together add more of the flour until it forms a ball and is difficult to work with.
  • Lightly flour a work surface and place the dough on the flour.
  • Knead by hand, adding flour, until dough is not too sticky to work with. When you can form the dough into a nice, soft, smooth ball you’re done.
  • Cover with a towel and let it rest for 10 – 15 minutes.
  • Pinch off a small piece of dough, about the size of a golf ball or walnut.
  • On a floured surface, using the flat of your hands, roll it into a cylinder 3/4 – 1″ (2cm) thick.
  • Slice off pieces about 1/2″ (1.25cm) long.
  • Lay the pieces on a paper towel.
  • Press the tines of a fork into each piece to flatten slightly and give ridges; dipping the fork into flour first if the cut pieces are sticky.
  • Repeat until all the dough is used.
  • To cook:
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
  • Add the gnocchi, about 1/3 at a time and cook until they float, 2 – 3 minutes.
  • As soon as they float remove and place in a colander to drain.
  • The gnocchi can be made to this point at any time. If not using right away, toss with a bit of olive oil to prevent sticking and set aside.  Refrigerate if not using within 2 hours.
  • To finish:
  • Melt butter in nonstick skillet.
  • Cook, undisturbed through the bubbling stage to the brown stage.  Watch carefully as it can quickly burn.
  • When light brown add the oil. This slows the browning, preventing it from getting a ‘burnt’ taste.
  • Add the herbs and lots of pepper.
  • Mix well, then add gnocchi.
  • Stir-fry quickly to reheat and lightly brown the gnocchi, about 3 – 5 minutes, depending on how cold the gnocchi is and how crunchy you want the outside to be.
  • Remove, sprinkle with sea salt and serve.

Print Recipe

Marrakesh is a both an ancient and a modern city and the inhabitants reflect that.

The streets in the old city are full of pedestrians shopping and vendors selling everything under the sun.

It’s busy and noisy and dusty.


Then you peak into a building and see this: (the entrance to the Ensemble Artisanal, or handicraft center)


The more affluent can live in beautifully landscaped apartment complexes.


But there may be camels on the street corner for the tourists to ride, or, as below, opposite a gated community of gorgeous houses.


There are riads, like the one we stayed at (with the plant next to the door), tucked away in narrow alleys in the medina…..


And magnificent 5-star hotels like this one.


Around another corner one can find small shops with apartments for the owners above, the same as any major city…. Except just a little different.


The apartment on the corner in this photo is for rent…..

Anyone interested?

Last update on October 18, 2015

4 thoughts on “Pumpkin Gnocchi in Browned Butter Sauce; Marrakesh contrasts”

    • It’s tempting. It’s tempting, Katie. (It’s just getting there that is the tricky part.)

      Butternut squashes are readily available right now at the vegetable markets. We got one the other day – but it is earmarked to become filling for tortellini (also ridiculously easy to make). However, perhaps I should hold back a little of the squash to make into gnocchi. We could have a taste-test.

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