How To Make Gnocchi
Making gnocchi from scratch is much less complicated than it seems. You only need 2 ingredients: potatoes and flour.
Would you like to know the secrets to make perfect gnocchi?
1) It’s very important to choose the right type of potato. You need a potato that is starchy, with a floury texture and minimum water content like Russet and Désirée potatoes.
2) Boil the potatoes in their skin and don’t pierce them during cooking otherwise they will absorb too much water.
3) Use a potato ricer to mash them (do not use a food processor) when they are still hot. There is no need to peel them as the skin will remain inside the potato ricer.
4) Use only enough flour to bring the dough together. It should be firm but slightly sticky.
5) Don’t overwork the dough or you will get dense and heavy gnocchi.
These little dumplings are very versatile and can be served with different sauces: butter and sage, gorgonzola and walnuts, bolognese sauce, pesto or a classic tomato sauce.
Gnocchi freeze very well. Spread them in a single layer on a floured baking sheet so they don’t stick together. Put the baking sheet into the freezer for 1 hour. Once frozen, put the gnocchi into a freezer bag. To cook them, just drop the frozen gnocchi directly in the boiling water without defrosting.
Gnocchi cook in a flash, be ready to scoop them out with a slotted spoon as soon as they float to the surface.
How To Make Gnocchi
- 1 kg (2.2 pounds) russet or desiree potatoes
- 350 grams (3 cups minus 1 tablespoon) all-purpose flour plus extra for the board
- Your favorite sauce (pesto simple tomato, butter and sage, whatever takes your fancy)
- Semolina flour to dust the trays/baking sheets
- Wash the potatoes (don’t peel them!) and place them in a saucepan. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil.
- Cook for about 20 minutes after the water has come to a boil.
- Put the flour on a work surface.
- While the potatoes are still hot, mash them with a potato ricer and add them to the flour.
- Work the flour into the potato until it becomes a soft, pliable dough (if the dough is too soft add more flour).
- Roll out the dough into logs about 2 cm (3/4 inch) thick and cut them into pieces.
- You can either cook them this way or create the distinctive ridges.
- Place the gnocchi at the top of the fork tines and gently press down, rolling it across the fork with your thumb. It will be slightly curled with the indentations on the opposite side.
- Arrange the gnocchi on a tray dusted with semolina flour.
- To cook the gnocchi, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and add the gnocchi. As soon as the gnocchi start floating, they are ready ( usually it takes 2 or 3 minutes).
- Remove them with a slotted spoon and put them in the pan with the sauce of your choice. Mix well and serve.