Right here, right now, we're in the middle of fall with Thanksgiving upon us in less than two weeks.
Here, in Northern California, the weather has been beautiful, some days almost too warm to even contemplate it being fall. But, the leaves are changing and falling, the mornings bright and the sun sets as I leave for work, which is always a treat.
In October, I took a half day from work to relax and spend the time cooking a meal that I wouldn't normally spend the time to make during the week. And, I also decided to try making gnocchi again. Several years ago, I attempted gnocchi (of the good ol' potato variety) and much to my disappointment, it fell apart when boiled. Ever since then, I have been weary of making gnocchi again and handling the generally pretty sticky dough even though wetter doughs often result in more moist cooked counterparts. Oh, the dilemma. But, I sucked it in and made the gnocchi anyways with the help of Kristen.
Traditionally, gnocchi has ridges that make it thinner in the middle and thus able to hold more sauce. But, if you're running out of time, or that seems like way too much time, they can do without.
As for the pork, it's like turkey's fatty counterpart even though pork tenderloins are being used in this recipe. It pairs just as well with cranberry sauce as turkey does on Thanksgiving, making this meal appropriate for fall without clashing with the third Thursday of November too much. The port in the sauce really does compliment the cranberries so I would recommend that you leave it in. And the pork is seared on the outside and finished in the oven resulting in a meat more juicy than the juiciest turkey can hope to aspire to be.
Plate it all together and this dinner pretty much screams fall. All it needs is vegetables of some sort but, I don't think that ever happened when eating this meal.
You can also be super hip and eat the Pork Tenderloin and Cranberry-Port Sauce on a waffle.