While Sophie was hot-tubbing it up with her friends, Maddy, Ian and I got a sneak preview of the cherry blossoms. Most trees were just shy of blooming, but it was worth a trip because we saw: a cat on a leash, a Japanese woman in traditional kimono, and a park ranger yelling, "GET OUT OF THE TREE NOW."
Post cherry blossom, we headed to two of our favorite Asian groceries to stock up Maddy's larder. She got a copy of Pok Pok for Christmas and despite forgetting her green papaya will forge ahead with some Thai cookery. For dinner, we went straight up spring. Sophie hates mushrooms and I don't have an unlimited fungi budget so we omitted the morels from this gnocchi recipe. This recipe made a ton of food. We had grilled pork chops, but the remainder of the gnocchi fed me lunch for several days. I haven't made potato gnocchi before, and I don't know if I ever will at this point. The ricotta gnocchi seemed less tempermental without the potential for becoming leaden like potato gnocchi. Maddy wished for a sturdier gnocchi so we could have gotten some color on it during the saute.
For dessert we enjoyed Valerie Gordon's Durango cookies. We substituted smoked almonds--not sure if they were appreciably more smoky. They were accompanied by banana ice cream with Maddy's most excellent salted caramel. I have a feeling these cookies will make many more appearances in the Lee house because they are easier than Momofuku's compost cookie and have that salty-sweet thing going on that hip people like us adopted ages ago.