Gnocchi (nyee-oh-key) is one of my favourite things to eat. For such a yummy dish, it’s surprisingly basic, consisting of basically potatoes, egg and flour.
In Rome, there is a saying, “Giovedi Gnocchi” – or Gnocchi Thursdays. There are also Venerdi Baccalà and Sabato Trippa and I’ve no idea how it started, but I find it an adorable and delicious tradition.
Gnocchi is actually much more straightforward to do compared to making fresh egg pasta and here is now to make them. You will need :
- A kilogram of potatoes
- Eggs (Optional)
First drop the potatoes in water and boil them. It’s best to use older potatoes as there are more starch content and thus holds better in gnocchi. A kilogram of potato yields enough for about 4 people to eat.
After about 20 minutes, when the potatoes are soft and easily pierced with a fork, it’s ready. Drain and then peel the skin off.
Now mash the peeled potatoes with a potato masher. Hopefully they are still warm by this time as it’s easier to mash them then.
You should have something that looks like this.
Now add two eggs, salt and pepper and about half a cup of flour. You can add more if you feel that the texture is too sticky.
In Italy, there is a type of flour called the “00” flour which indicates that it is very finely milled. But regular flour works fine too.
Now mix them altogether till it becomes a soft dough. Divide the dough into two and roll it till it becomes long and thin. Cover the strand with flour so that it doesn’t stick. And then cut it up with a knife.
You could cook them as it is, but if you like, you can roll it up into little balls and then passing it with a fork to create some lines, but that’s purely aesthetic.
And then boil some water, and when the water starts to bubble, add some salt. I added a bit of olive oil so that the gnocchi doesn’t stick. And put the gnocchi in. After a couple of minutes, when the gnocchi floats up, it’s ready!
And now it’s just a matter of adding in the sauces that you like. Here are just a few variations of the gnocchi that we made so far :
1. Gnocchi alla Sorrentina.
2. Gnocchi with basic tomato sauce. So good that Jerrick could attest to that.
3. Gnocchi con asparagi which I fell in love with the first time I ate it in Genzano.
4. Gnocchi con burro parmiggiano e salvia. Not my favourite though, cause it feels cloying after a few bites.
5. Gnocchi with funghi.
5. And ehm … this isn’t gnocchi but lets just pretend this is gnocchi with pesto as I forgot to take a picture of it.
And many many other variations! And since I’ve put up this post on a wednesday, you’ve got ample time to run out to buy potatoes, eggs and flour to make your own gnocchi for Giovedi Gnocchi!