Gnocchi are an extremely popular dish in Italy: they pair well with just about any seasoning and they’re super quick to cook, especially if you buy them ready-made at the supermarket or at your local fresh pasta shop. Do you know which gnocchi taste the best, though? But why, the ones you make yourself, of course!
Italian gnocchi are extremely easy to prepare. The main ingredient is potatoes, and the best potatoes to use are the ones that have a yellow flesh and are a bit old and soft. Fresh potatoes contain a lot of water; to knead them in a dough, one has to add a lot more flour to make up for the extra liquid, and this can make the gnocchi a bit chewy. So if you have potatoes that have seen better days, don’t throw them away: turn them into some delicious, mouth-watering homemade gnocchi instead.
Did you know? Albeit sporting a similar name, the Gnocco Fritto is actually something completely different – not to be confused with a plate of steamy gnocchi!
Serves: 4 | Preparation time: 20 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins
- Potatoes: 500 g
- White flour: 200 g
- Eggs: 1
- Salt: ½ a tsp
Peel the potatoes and boil them in a pot full of water for about 30 minutes, or until they soften up. The potatoes are ready when you can easily cut through them when poking their skin with a knife.
Cut the potatoes into big cubes and leave them to cool down at room temperature. Mash the potatoes and place them on a lightly floured work surface. Add the flour, the egg and the salt, then knead all the ingredients together until you get a compact and homogeneous dough.
Divide the dough into thirds and use your hands to roll each of them into a long sausage of dough with a diameter of 1.5 to 2 cm. Cut each sausage of dough into pieces about 2 cm long.
Decorate your gnocchi by gently pressing them on the ‘riga gnocchi’: it’s a little wooden board with a serrated suface that is used specifically to give the gnocchi their typical pattern. Remember to flour your tools and your working area to make sure the gnocchi don’t stick to any surface.
Tip: If you cannot find a ‘riga gnocchi’ in your local fresh pasta shop, simply use the prongs of a fork to gently carve the strips onto the surface of each piece of dough.
Boil your gnocchi in a pot of salted water. Don’t take your eyes away from the pot: 2 or 3 minutes after throwing them into the boiling water, the gnocchi will come up to the surface: this means that they’re ready, and you must remove them from the water using a skimmer.
You can now flavour your gnocchi however you want! We have some ideas that you can check out: a delicious and rich gorgonzola cream, some sage and butter seasoning, or a simple and fresh Pesto alla Genovese.