Salmon with Gnocchi & a Lemony Cream Cheese Sauce
Updated: Aug 1, 2021
Want a fresh and slightly different weeknight dinner? Try this one! I've got all your bases covered; protein, vegetables & packed full of flavour. The salmon is succulent, the lemony sauce is creamy and cheesy, the zucchini and dill add pops of freshness and crunch, and last but not least important... the gnocchi is pillowy and light and oh so delicious. This is comfort food but healthy - and guess what? It's all in the one pan so you don't have to waste time cleaning up!
To make this extra no fuss, you can use store bought gnocchi - simply boil according to packet instructions and away you go! However, I've used my sweet potato gnocchi recipe here and I’ve included the recipe for it below. If you wanted to, you could also swap out the cooking of the salmon to smoked salmon, perhaps around 150 grams (it would save you about 10 minutes of cooking time!).
For the gnocchi:
500g sweet potatoes
1/2 cup of ricotta cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
250g of type 00 flour, plus more for dusting
For the salmon & sauce:
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
2 fillets of salmon
200g / 3/4 cup of cream cheese
1 clove garlic, finely sliced
1 zucchini, spiralised or in ribbons
1 sprig of fresh dill
1 lemon's zest and juice
1/4 cup dry white wine (optional) or water
salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
Set the oven to 220 °C or 425°F, line a baking tray with baking paper. Wash the sweet potato, then prick them a few times with a fork, before placing on a baking tray in the oven. Bake for 45 minutes or until soft on the inside.
Scoop the flesh of the sweet potato into a mixing bowl, discarding the peel. Mix the ricotta, beaten egg, and about 2 teaspoons of salt until incorporated and creamy.
Begin mixing in the flour and knead it to a smooth dough until it just comes together. (Do not overwork or you’ll end up with stodgy gnocchi, and nobody wants that!)
Turn mixture out onto a floured chopping board or bench top, and taking handfuls of dough, roll into a log about 1 1/2cm wide, then cut the log into 2cm long pieces.
Dust gnocchi generously with flour so it doesn’t stick while you work on making the rest of the gnocchi.
For the Salmon & Sauce: Fill a large pot with hot water. Bring to the boil and add salt to the water before turning the stovetop down to a medium so that the water simmers.
In a shallow dutch oven or large saucepan, add olive oil and and then put on the stovetop on medium-high heat. Place the salmon fillets skin side down first and cook for 4 minutes, then turn it onto the other side. Once the salmon is cooked to your liking remove it form the pan and set it aside on a plate.
Reduce heat to medium and add garlic, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and zucchini to the pan. Cook for 5 minutes stirring occasionally, then add the cream cheese and the splash of wine (or water). Stir until the alcohol evaporates off and the mixture is creamy, about another 3 to 4 minutes, then reduce heat to low.
Tip the gnocchi into the pot of boiling water and cook for around two or three minutes or until the gnocchi begin to float.
Take the gnocchi out of the pot, so as not to overcook and add to the cream cheese sauce, tossing to coat, adding some of the gnocchi water, and turning the heat back onto low if necessary. Leave the gnocchi in the saucepan for at least 2 minutes so they absorb the beautiful flavours of the sauce.
Serve gnocchi immediately in medium pasta bowls, then top with the salmon and sprigs of dill. Squeeze over lemon juice and season with more freshly cracked pepper, and salt. Please enjoy!