Thursday, February 28, 2008

Gnocchi like we had in Italy, step by step. And a video clip from our trip.


Greg and I recently traveled through Italy for three weeks. I ordered gnocchi half a dozen times. Five out of six times, what arrived at our table had clearly originated from a vacuum-packed, commercial gnocchi supplier...and with good reason. A batch of fresh gnocchi can take up to an hour to prepare.

At one point in our journey, we found ourselves in the charming and non-touristy town of Padova, AKA Padua, just outside of Venice (see video above - three weeks footage of our trip, and it took me almost a year to pots one clip!). After a long day of traveling in cold, drenching rain, we stumbled into a little inn that was a block from our hotel. Greg eagerly ordered the spicy clam linguini, and I hesitantly pointed to the gnocchi. The spicy linguini was the best we had on the trip (or ever since), and the gnocchi were amazing: sized like scallops and drenched in an artichoke puree, I felt like I was eating light, pillowy clouds. Commercial gnocchi are not exactly better or worse, they're just different. At least once, it's worth the time to try making gnocchi at home!

Recipe credit to Heidi at 101 Cookbooks

Photo credit to Greg, somewhere in Domestic Bliss (?) , CT


1. Slice two large russet potatoes. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook until a knife inserted in the center slides out easily. Alternately, bake the potatoes. Peel and let cool for a moment.


2. Push the potatoes through a ricer


3. Mound the potato shavings and make an indent in the center, in which you should place 1/2 to 1 well-beaten egg. Sift 3/4-1 cup flour on top.


4. Knead the dough lightly, adding extra sprinkles of flour as necessary (up to an additional 1/4 cup). The dough should not be sticky, but it should feel light, soft, and a little pillowy. Like Play-doh. If you can roll it into tubes without it sticking to the board, it's firm enough; feel free to add more flour to make it firmer.


5. Roll sections of dough into logs


6. Cut the logs to the desired size


7. Form the gnocchi. Drop into salted boiling water and cook until they float to the top. Gnocchi are best served with thin, clingy sauces (eg, herby pesto, a non-chunky marinara, brown butter and sage, or something creamy).

A note on how to form gnocchi: using a gnocchi board (picture), or the tines of a fork, lightly press the gnocchi to form ridges. Method (a), in the photo above, I used my index finger to create ridges on one half and smoosh the other side into a orochietti shape. Method (b), use the palm of your hand to quickly roll a segment of dough down the board. The dough turns into a tube (gemelli shape) , and this is how I made all of the gnocchi pictured at the top. Alternately, refrigerate large tubes (1" diam) and slice with a knife into scallop sized pieces.


Would you believe me if I said these gnocchi were too pillowy? These gnocchi were so soft that they lacked definite bite, and they didn't quite hold up to the quick red sauce I prepared. Slicing the gnocchi into large, scallop sized pieces about 1" around cured that problem. Alternately, and probably a better option, add a full egg (I only added half of one) and a little extra flour to create a firmer dough. This will make the gnocchi much easier to work with. Test a few pieces of gnocchi in boiling water as you go in order to find the right size gnocchi or amount of flour (this is really the only way to be sure you like the texture).


Anonymous said...

Yum -- this looks delicious. Gnocchi's one of my favorites, though it definitely has to be fresh. Thanks for the recipe!

Jessy and her dog Winnie said...

Those look really cool! I just recently posted about making gnocchi. Yours looks prettier. lol.

Anonymous said...

I found your blog through Smitten Kitchen, and am just salavating at the beautiful yummy looking foods.

I almost don't want to go out of town this weekend so I can stay home and cook!

Anonymous said...

Yes exactly, in some moments I can phrase that I jibe consent to with you, but you may be inasmuch as other options.
to the article there is quiet a definitely as you did in the downgrade issue of this demand video editor ?
I noticed the catch-phrase you have in the offing not used. Or you partake of the dreary methods of inspiriting of the resource. I suffer with a week and do necheg

Anonymous said...

Hey guys,
I'm considering getting a best USB flash drive for my Windows Xp Ready Boost function, while I don't know which brand to purchase.
My worry is about the quality of these USB flash drives for I've experienced losing my data before. Even the [url=]usb flash drive device[/url] among the reviews I chose done well most time, after an infection all the data was missing.
Current, I would like to get a new flash drive whilst I really don't want to lose my own data anymore.
What's the USB flash drive device do you think is the most efficient?
I would appreciate it a lot if you can recommend a good one.
Thanks in advance.

Anonymous said...

He гuns ѕucсessful tеchnοlοgу compаny Outѕоurcеry busineѕs which sold part of its stratеgic hardware.

Also visit mу web-ѕite - internet marketing consultants

Anonymous said...

They were then joined by seven British Olympic heroes long jumper Lynn Davies, 70,
swimmer Duncan Goodhew, 55, Dame Kelly Holmes,
42, Dame Mary Peters, 73, sailor Shirley Robertson, 44, Daley Thompson, 53, and Redgrave.
Add some double-sided tape to the back. Congressman But whatever they're called, the annual show of force is guaranteed to get a hoof print on a home computer to keep fairy-loving girls busy for an afternoon.

my weblog; video game coupons