I have never made my own pasta before. Well, unless you count the dumplings in chicken and dumplings. Or the wrappers for chinese dumplings. I don’t. Anyway, gnocchi is one of those things I’ve eaten and loved in Italian restaurants, but I’ve never had it at home. A while back I saw someone make gnocchi on the Food Network and it stuck in my head. I made a shepherd’s pie last week and decided to make extra potatoes just for this purpose. Be sure to keep them JUST potatoes–don’t add butter or milk. Now a few points I will bring up that will probably give you better results. You really should work with the potatoes while they are still warm. I was working with leftovers, so mine were cold. Also be SURE not to overwork the dough. Your gnocchi will come out better if you don’t. Mine weren’t exactly pretty, but they were quite tasty. So I shall submit my humble offering for this week’s Presto Pasta Nights, hosted by Michelle, Italian Mama Chef.
- 2 cups mashed potatoes
- 1 egg
- 1 cup flour
- pinch of salt
- sauce of your choice (I used Knorr creamy pesto)
- Pass your potatoes through a ricer. If you don’t have a ricer, just mash them by hand and use a fork to fluff them up.
- Mix your warm potatoes with the egg, flour, and salt by hand until you have a pliable ball of dough. As I said DO NOT OVERMIX.
- Dust your work area with flour.
- Take part of the dough and roll it out carefully with your hands until you have logs of dough about 3/4 inch in diameter. Be careful to use light hands and press ever so slightly out rather than down to draw the dough out.
- Cut your tubes of dough into 1 inch pieces.
- Use either your finger tip or fork tines to make an indentation to catch the sauce. There’s apparently a board of some kind you can buy for this. I saw it in Michael Ciarello’s kitchen.
- As you finish each one, place them on a lightly floured baking pan.
- Bring 6 quarts of water to boal in a shallow pan.
- Carefully drop the gnocchi, a few at a time, into the boiling water.
- They’ll rise to the surface when they’re cooked.
- Remove them with a slotted spoon, draining well, and place on a warm serving dish while you cook the rest of the gnocchi.
- As soon as they’re all done, plate (or bowl) them up, and pour your heated sauce over the top. Serve immediately.