I have always dreamed that the first time I made gnocchi would be in my niece Colleen’s kitchen in Italy. I pictured us with flour all over our aprons, sipping a glass of fancy red wine. I’m not sure when that is going to happen (it’s still a dream of mine). The last few months certainly have been different; to say the least! Being in our homes, not being able to have “physical” contact with family or friends. These times have been trying, that’s for sure!!
I have been crossing a lot of baking and cooking “firsts” off my list. I’ve conquered sourdough bread, made mascarpone AND cream cheese….from scratch!! I’ve made homemade ravioli 3 times! It’s been down right “Little House on the Prairie” around here! Nightly walks after dinner with the hubby and morning workouts have helped to undo some of the damage (mental and physical…wink wink).
I finally made gnocchi today. I still plan on making it with Colleen someday. I just won’t be a rookie:).
I have to admit that I struggled a bit when I was rolling the gnocchi on the fork. I tried rolling them off the back of the fork. That didn’t work very well for me, so I turned the fork around and voila′, instant gnocchi!
I also didn’t have a potato ricer. Pushing the hot potatoes through a fine wire sieve with a large spoon (or plastic spatula) works well too!! No fancy gadgets needed:).
I had some 00 flour from those homemade ravioli I was telling you about, so I used it in this recipe. All-purpose flour would work just fine too.
Now, let’s get started!!
4 medium (approx. 900g)potatoes(I used Russet)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1large egg, room temperature
1cup 00 flour (120 grams) All-purpose flour can be used if you don’t have 00 flour
salt (for baking and seasoning)
Preheat oven to 425° F. Prepare potatoes. Thoroughly wash and dry the potatoes. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Poke the potatoes several time with a fork. Rub potatoes with olive oil and sprinkle on a generous amount of fine sea salt. This will help draw moisture out of the potatoes. You don’t want a lot of moisture as it will cause your gnocchi to be soggy. Place in oven and bake for 60-70 minutes, until a fork will easily pierce the center.
Remove from the oven and sit for 5 minutes. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop out the center leaving the skins (maybe for baked skins or compost pile).
Using a fine strainer (or ricer), press the potatoes through the strainer while they are still hot. Do this using the back of a large spoon. Do a couple at a time. Be careful…those spuds are hot!!
Break your egg in small bowl and thoroughly whisk (use a fork or small whisk).
Pour over the top of the strained (or riced) potatoes. Sprinkle 1 cup of flour over the potatoes and egg.
Using a bench scraper, gently bring the dough together by folding from the outside and press together in the center until the dough comes together is no longer sticky. Gently knead just until mixture comes together. Sprinkle a bit more flour over top if needed. You don’t want to overwork the gluten in the flour. We want our gnocchi to be light and fluffy:).
Roll into a log shape (about 8″ long).
Cut the dough into thick slices (about an inch thick), and on a floured surface roll them out into ropes roughly 3/4 inch in diameter.
Cut each rope into 3/4″-1″ pieces.
Dip a fork into flour. Hold it in one hand, and use your index finger to hold a cut edge of a piece of gnocchi against the tines of the fork.
Press into the center of the gnocchi with your index finger to make a deep indentation. While you are pressing the piece against the tines, flip it away over the tip of the fork. If it becomes sticky, coat your fingers with flour. At this point, refrigerate the gnocchi on a parchment covered baking sheet for several hours or you can freeze them. They can be cooked when they are frozen. The cooking time will be a little longer.
Drop gnocchi into a pot of boiling water (make sure to salt your water for more flavor) and cook until they float to the surface (about 2 minutes if refrigerated, if you are cooking them after freezing them, they will take a little longer to float to the top).
Once they rise to the top give them another 20 seconds before removing with a slotted spoon. Try not to stir while cooking as they are delicate and this can break them up.
Serve with any of your favorite pasta sauces or simply with brown butter. I made tomato pesto and grated a little parmesan on top. This is comfort food at its finest! I hope you make these amazing little pillows of deliciousness!! If you do, tag me Instagram @goodeatsbymimi. I would love to hear from you and see your pictures:). Enjoy!!