The turning of the earth

Who is excited for spring?

Obviously I am. (I officially have a plot in the community garden this year, which is conveniently located adjacent from our house. I have high hopes, as per usual, about this year's crop).

However, it is interesting to note that this might've been one of the first winters in a long time that I did not mind as much. (aka I did not hate it as much as I typically do). For one thing, I got three snow days. Who doesn't love that? But really, minus the blitz of snow we had at the end of last month, winter in Kansas can be fairly mild. And after the summer we had last year, I could find in me an appreciation for cold and hibernating life. Don't get me wrong, I will still choose 70 degree weather any day, but there is something to be said about cozy weather and multiple cups of tea.

My sweet new lamp from the MCC ReUse It Center brings a nice warm glow to my work day
I used to hate March because it was such a tease. For some reason I always thought it was time for spring in March when really it was just the end of winter. However, in Kansas spring starts to come in March. For real. None of this joking around business. It has made me appreciate this month more than I used to when I lived in Illinois and Ohio.

St Patrick's Day theme coffee drink, don't mind if I do

The arrival of strawberries at Meridian Grocery
Another great part about this part of the year is the anticipation of a new garden season, which, in turns,  reminds me that it is okay to use up the produce I have so lovingly saved from last year. i.e. the pumpkin puree in my freezer.

Last Sunday, I finally got around to using some of this pumpkin when Annali and I made pumpkin gnocchi. Oh. my. word.

Okay, so like usual, I was scared of this recipe. What if it was weird? Despite my admiration for pumpkin as a vegetable, I think there is still a lot of societal ingrained fear about eating this orange substance in non-pie form. As a result, this recipe had been lurking on my pinterest board since last fall.

Thankfully, I was brave enough to try it. It is definitely a keeper and it was so easy. Why on earth was I intimidated by it? Seriously. Food fears are always irrational.

Pumpkin Gnocchi with Sage Brown Butter and Feta

1 c pumpkin puree
1/3 c grated parmesan cheese
1 egg yoke
1 t salt
1/4 t nutmeg
1 1/2 c flour
4 T butter
1/4 c fresh sage, minced (Yeah, okay I never have fresh herbs in the winter so I just sprinkled some dried sage into the butter and hoped for the best)
crumbled feta, as desired

Combine pumpkin, parmesan, egg yolk, salt, and nutmeg in a bowl and mix together. Stir in flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until dough begins to come together. Turn out on a floured surface and knead briefly, until dough is smooth and soft.
Cut dough into four pieces. Roll dough out into a rope approximately 1 inch thick, then cut into 1-inch pieces. 
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add gnocchi and cook until they begin to float, then drain and set aside. Heat butter in a saucepan over medium heat, then stir until butter begins to brown. Add sage, then add gnocchi and cook until nicely browned on each side.
Remove from pan and top with crumbled feta.

Source: Reclaiming Provincial

So here is to bidding winter adieu and to waiting for the arrival of spring with patience.