Saturday, September 3, 2011

Parmesan Gnocchi with Puttanesca Sauce

(4 servings)

When I decided to make Marillenknödel, I also found myself thinking about gnocchi. The dough is pretty similar.

This gnocchi turned out a bit larger than usual. Once the garlic hit the hot olive oil as I was making the sauce, and that wonderful aroma filled my kitchen, I began to get hunger pangs. All of a sudden my leisurely time became rather hurried, and my focus shifted from the process of making this meal to seeing the finished food on my plate!

1 lb starchy potatoes, russet or idaho
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
2/3 cup flour, give or take

1/2 tsp olive oil
parmesan cheese for serving

Wash the potatoes, cut them into a few pieces (no need to peel them) then boil them in salted water until they are tender; 10-15 minutes. Remove, drain the water.

Remove the skins when they are cool enough to handle, then press the warm potatoes through a ricer, or mash them with a potato masher.

Gently mix the egg, cheese, salt and pepper into the potatoes, then carefully work in the flour, beginning with 1/2 a cup. Keep adding small amounts of flour until you have a soft smooth dough, trying not to overwork it or to get too much flour into the mixture (otherwise the gnocchi might be too dense).

Set the dough aside and make the sauce.

puttanesca sauce
2 tsp olive oil
2-3 cloves garlic
1 medium shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon anchovy paste, or to taste
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup kalamata olives
1 tbsp capers
1/8 - 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, to taste
1/2 tsp Italian Seasoning*

Heat the oil in a skillet, and add the garlic. Saute for a minute or so, then add the shallots. Cook until the shallots soften.

Add the anchovy paste, tomatoes, olives, capers, red pepper flakes and Italian Seasoning. Lower the heat and simmer for about 20-30 minutes. Finish making the gnocchi while the sauce cooks.

Break off small pieces of dough and roll into ropes about 1/2 inch in diameter. Cut the rope into 1 inch pieces and roll them along the tins of a fork or a gnocchi board. Sprinkle flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to anything.

Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil to which you've also added 1/2 tsp of oil. Slide in the gnocchi; you may have to cook the gnocchi in two or more batches depending on the size of your pot. Simmer the gnocchi until they rise to the surface, about 3-6 minutes. Scoop them out with a slotted spoon.

Spoon the Puttanesca sauce over the gnocchi and sprinkle with parmesan cheese, if desired. If your sauce became too thick while you were forming the gnocchi, then stir a small amount of water into it before serving.

* I used "Simply Organic Italian Seasoning"  which contains; Oregano, Marjoram, Thyme, Basil, Rosemary and  Sage.


leaf (the indolent cook) said...

I could go a bowl of this! Homemade gnocchi is so nice.

Sue/the view from great island said...

I'm impressed by so much in this post. I tried to make butternut squash gnocchi recently and it was a complete flop. I got pasty blobs of dough. I'm also impressed that you have a gnocchi board...I've never heard of one. I dropped my gnocchi into the water with a spoon, maybe if I use your method I'll have better luck. Yours looks really beautiful.

Gerlinde in Washington said...

My gnocchi seem to turn out better if I rice and make the dough immediately rather than using leftover mashed potatoes from the day before.. I end up having to add more flour and I'm not sure why that is.

The gnocchi board was an impulse buy.. it was on sale for $3, I think.. I always used a fork before I got it.

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