Life at the Slam Palace was choc full of sunshine and tasty good times. When it came to dining in our swank inner Fitzroy share house abode, we extended a no fuss sensibility; rarely glamorous, our meals typically straddled the perfunctory rope between biological necessity and ‘phwoar! that was actually pretty bloody tasty’.
We usually made do with what we had, tantamount to sloth considering the supermarket was 80 metres from our front door. When we did make it down to Safeway, goods acquired were often of questionable integrity. For a while there, I overdosed on home brand frozen garlic bread, which came out a little too well under a sunbeam sandwich press. I put on extra kgs that winter. It was addiction.
When not consumed stand alone in a deviant fashion, budget garlic bread went hand in hand with a dish that, with religious fervour, my esteemed housemate Rusty used to concoct—he called it ‘Crazy Pasta’; crazy simple, crazy tasty, always created with Rusty’s hallmark energetic kitchen erraticism.
Crazy pasta was essentially 200 grams of cured meat crisped in burning oil added to whatever variety of pasta was in the cupboard that week. Its beauty was its simplicity, requiring not even a can of tomatoes (nor an 80 metre walk to Safeway) to generate a deeply satisfying sauce.
We’ve taken this week’s cue from Rusty’s halcyon culinary madness with the sh.k Bacon, Mushroom and Pea Gnocchi. It’s nowhere near as crazy as Crazy Pasta, but just as easy and, moreover, potentially even more salivatory. Serve with budget sandwich pressed garlic bread at the peril of your waistline and integrity
- 500g Gnocchi
- 200g Swiss brown mushrooms
- 100g Bacon
- ½ Cup of finely grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ Cup of frozen peas
- 2 Cloves of garlic
- Fill a medium-large sized pot with salted water and bring to the boil on the stove (this will be for the gnocchi).
- Heat the olive oil on high in a separate pan, add mushrooms and bacon, cook until mushrooms are browned and bacon is crisping.
- When water is boiling, add the gnocchi. Simultaneously add peas to the pan with the bacon and mushrooms.
- When gnocchi starts floating to the surface of the water, drain and add to the bacon, mushroom and peas. Add half the Parmesan cheese and cook the mix together on high until the gnocchi is browned and slightly crisped.
- Top with salt, pepper and a sprinkle of Parmesan
- Serve up and throw down!