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Gnocchi a Casa

June 6, 2008

Brave enough to try your hand making gnocchi at home? Here is some direction to get you started. Let me know how it turns out!

Gnocchi di Patate

Serving size: 8
Time: 1 hour preparation; 2 minutes cooking

Ingredients:
5 lbs. russet potatoes
3 1/2 cups flour
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 egg
Flour for dusting board and dough

*Note: If you want to modify the servings this recipe renders, keep this in mind: for every pound and a half of potatoes, use 1 cup of flour and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

Directions:
Wash your potatoes and pierce them with a fork. Microwave them until properly baked (If preferred, the potatoes can be boiled until tender with their skins and no holes, as you don’t want the potato to take on water). Let cool for several minutes before peeling the skins off the potatoes.
Once peeled, put them through a potato ricer into a mixing bowl (If you don’t have a potato ricer, use the large holes of a grater). Add flour to potatoes and mix on slow speed (If you don’t have a mixer, this can also be done by hand). Once potatoes and flour are blended, add salt and mix again before adding the egg. If the dough is still too dry, add another egg. You want the dough to be firm, yet slightly give when touched. It should stick together without being too sticky.

Dust your board with flour. Taking a handful of dough, hand roll it into a long 1/2-inch thick rope. Cut 1/2-inch long pieces off the rope. Take one of the 1/2-inch pieces and place it against the tines of the back of a fork. Gently roll the piece of dough away from you and to the tip of the fork. It should have ridges on the outside where it rolled along the fork and a little pocket where your thumb was. This shape helps the gnocchi cook properly. Place finished gnocchi onto a lightly floured cookie sheet or wax paper. Repeat this rolling and shaping until all your dough is formed into gnocchi.
When ready to cook, bring water to boil in a large pot. Drop gnocchi into the water. Remove the cooked gnocchi using a skimmer or spoon after they float to the surface (approximately 2 minutes). Serve with your favorite sauce and enjoy!

Good Sauces to accompany Gnocchi:

Marinara & Alfredo Sauce
We usually make these two sauces separately and mix them together as we’re eating the gnocchi. It’s a delicious combination as the marinara provides a robust flavor, while the cream sauce adds a delicate touch, helping prevent the gnocchi from being overpowered by the marinara.
Marinara Sauce
Time: 5 minutes preparation: 45 minutes to 1 hour cooking

Ingredients:
3 cans tomato sauce
1/4 cup butter
1 medium onion, cut in half

Directions:
Empty tomato sauce into large pot. Bring to a simmer and add butter and two halves of the onion. Simmer until ready to serve.

Alfredo Sauce
Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cup whipping cream
pinch of pepper
pinch of nutmeg
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:
Melt together butter and whipping cream in saucepan over low heat. Mix in pepper and nutmeg, stirring until well incorporated. Add Parmesan cheese until completely combined.

Salvia e Burro (Sage & Butter)

This is one of those sauces that I make differently each time depending on my mood and how much pasta I’m cooking!

Time: 2 minutes preparation; 5 minutes cooking time

Ingredients:
1/2 cup butter
several sprigs fresh sage (or 1/2 Tablespoon dried, crushed sage)

Directions:
While the pasta is cooking, melt butter in large skillet over low heat until it starts to foam. Add sage leaves and toss for 1 minute while butter soaks up the sage flavor. Once your pasta has been drained, add it to the large skillet and toss over medium-high heat. With pasta now fully coated, serve and enjoy!

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