Gnocchi !

The end of the year is for re-assessing your priorities, and for that, you need nourishment This is why I spend New Years making gnocchi every year. This year, I finally wrote down my secret {ahem} recipe…

I follow Mario Batali’s recipe though I don’t do the ice bath at the end of cooking, but maybe you’d want to try that? If you do, let me know how it works!

I also read a little about gluten free gnocchi, and added some alternative flours to the recipe. I generally trust Serious Eats, and they suggest the rice flours

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds potatoes, a starchy variety like russet, Yukon gold, or Idaho
  • 1 ½ cups (or as needed) unbleached all-purpose flour or all-purpose gluten-free flour (like Better Batter) or 1 cup white rice flour plus ½ cup sweet rice flour
  • 1 extra-large egg (optional but recommended)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Spices (optional for you, but not for me)
    • 1-2 teaspoons nutmeg
    • ½ teaspoon white pepper
    • ½ teaspoon thyme
    • ¼ cup grated Parmesan

To prepare gnocchi

  1. Wash potatoes and place in a large saucepan. Cover them with water and bring them to a boil. Then cook at a low boil for 25-40 minutes, until potatoes are fork tender. Do not overcook! If they start to split at the skins, they are past done. Remove and drain.
  2. Peel the potatoes; the skins will slip off with the help of a paring knife.
  3. Pass the peeled potatoes through a ricer onto a clean counter or board. Allow them to cool until they’re just warm to the touch.
  4. Mound the potatoes and make a well in the center of the potato mound. Sprinkle the whole thing with flour. Add the egg, salt, and spices into the well and use a fork to mix the eggs gradually into the potatoes. Once everything is incorporated, form the dough into a ball and knead it gently just until all ingredients are incorporated, and dough is slightly sticky but dry to the touch. This should take 3-4 minutes at the most.
  5. Divide the dough into 6 large balls. Work with one ball at a time; keep the others under a damp tea towel so the dough doesn’t dry out. Use extra flour on your work space to keep the dough from sticking. Roll each ball into a ¾ inch diameter rope. Cut the rope into 1-inch pieces and using a fork, score the sides of the cut pieces using a rolling motion. Once the gnocchi are formed, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  6. Once all gnocchi are formed, I put the baking sheets into the freezer. The gnocchi freeze solid in a few hours and can then be placed into a storage container (like a freezer bag). Whether cooked fresh or out of the freezer, they cook up the same way, below.

To cook gnocchi

  1. Fill a large pot with water, salt it, and bring it to a boil. On an adjacent burner, melt a few tablespoons of butter in a large sauté pan.
  2. Working in batches, drop the gnocchi gently into the boiling water so that there is only a single layer of gnocchi cooking at any one time. When they float to the surface, they’re done. Remove with a slotted spoon.
  3. Transferring them immediately to the buttered sauté pan. Let cook for several minutes on each side so that they brown slightly. At this point, they can be added to another bowl with a different sauce. Alternatively, gnocchi can be removed from boiling water directly into sauce, but they will be softer and more fragile.

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