I stumbled across this recipe over at Smitten Kitchen and I knew I had to try it. I love gnocchi! I once tried following a recipe that claimed to be for spinach and ricotta gnocchi but all I got was Spinach and Ricotta Bake, which was nice but it wasn’t gnocchi. I’m so happy to be able to say that this recipe makes damned fine gnocchi.
It is, however, a little tricky. You want to use as little flour as possible and so you have the problem that if you stop moving the dough then it sticks. I went with the compromise of using less flour in the dough and more flour on the counter. Seemed to work well but I couldn’t get them to hold the fork ridges for the life of me, so rustic gnocchi it was! To be honest I just don’t think the ridges are worth the extra hassle.
Serves 8 (Totally forgot to freeze half the gnocchi though so we’re eating this for lunch)
1 kg old, floury potatoes (approx 4 baking potatoes)
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp salt
330g plain flour
– Stab the potatoes all over and place on a tray in an oven heated to gas mark 6.
– Bake for 1 hour turning ove halfway through. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
– Peel the skin from the potatoes and grate the middles, with the largest holes on your grater, into a large bowl.
– Add the egg and salt and mix well with a wooden spoon.
– Add most of the flour and mix until it forms a dough. Add more flour as necessary until it is just to the point where it won’t stick to your hands (so much).
– Tip out onto a well floured worksurface an knead, as you would bread, for a few minutes.
– Divide into 6 balls.
– Flour your surface again and use your hands to roll each ball into a long sausage about 3/4″ thick.
– Cut into 1″ pieces and set them on a lightly floured board being careful not to let them touch.
– At this point, unless you are feeding an army, freeze half of the gnocchi for later. If you freeze them on the tray and then tip them into a sealed bag they won’t stick.
– To cook simply tip into a deep pan of boiling water. When they float to the top they are cooked. Remove with a slatted spoon and place in a serving dish and keep warm until they are all cooked.
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
~200g baby plum tomatoes and cherry vine tomatoes, halved
~12 fresh basil leaves, shredded
~400ml creme fraiche
200g soft cheese
4 tbsp grated hard cheese/parmesan
– Heat a little oil in a deep pan, lightly fry your garlic for about 1 minute.
– Add the tomatoes and basil and cook for about 4 minutes over a low heat.
– Add the creme fraiche, soft cheese and grated cheese and stir gently to melt in the soft cheese.
– Continue to heat over a low heat until the sof cheese has melted and the sauce is heated through.
– Pour over gnocchi or pasta to serve.