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Creamy Ricotta, Lemon & Kale Gnocchi with Smoked Salmon

1 November 2023

We all have those nights that we just don’t feel like cooking. The easy way out is to order in, but in the end I always find it super expensive and disappointing. So we all need easy weeknight recipes up our sleeves and this one is just that.

It’s on the table within 20 minutes, comforting, healthy-ish, no fuss and just a few ingredients. Perfect!

Creamy Ricotta, Lemon & Kale Gnocchi with Smoked Salmon

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Dinner, lunch Italian
By Saffron Serves: 2
Prep Time: 2 minutes Cooking Time: 18 minutes Total Time: 20 minutes


  • 1 packet gnocchi (vacuum packed kind)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 - 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 small leek, thinly sliced (optional)
  • ± 400 g kale, washed, hard stem removed, finely chopped
  • 250 g ricotta
  • ± 50 g parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Squeeze lemon juice to taste
  • Pepper & Salt
  • 200 g smoked salmon
  • Optional: Poached egg to serve



Bring a large pot of salted water to a simmer so it’s ready to go.


Heat olive oil in a large frying pan and add the onions, sauté until fragrant and translucent, ± 3 minutes. Add the garlic and leek and sauté on low-medium heat until the leek has wilted, ± 4 minutes.


Add the kale, the water from rinsing will help it steam. Pile it all on, it will look like a lot but it will wilt. Stir now and then ± 3-4 minutes until wilted. Scoop in the ricotta and stir to coat the kale, turn the heat down.


Add the gnocchi to the boiling water, cook for 3 minutes.


While the gnocchi is cooking, ladle some of the starchy water into the kale mix, stir vigorously. The sauce will start to emulsify and thicken. Add more water to get your desired consistency. Add the parmesan cheese, lemon zest and a squeeze of lemon. Mix well, taste and season with pepper and salt and more lemon if you like.


Using a slotted spoon, scoop the gnocchi directly from the boiling water into the kale mix, stir well to coat.


Serve straight away with the smoked salmon draped over the top. For extra indulgence, add a poached egg!

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