Homemade pasta is one of my favorite things to do make so my sister Lucia and I decided to have a pasta making day yesterday. This gnocchi recipe is a classic taught to us by our grandmother in Italy who shared with us secrets that are continuously whispered in our ears in making perfect gnocchi. We first made them the traditional way and then the gluten-free way for my very special doctor and his wife who have been working around the clock to help those in need!
Gnocchi recipes look fairly simple as they primarily have 2 to 3 ingredients, but even with so few ingredients, gnocchi making takes practice and patience. The potato gnocchi can be made with or without eggs - our grandmother’s traditional recipe did not include the egg. For the gluten-free version, however, it’s best to add an egg as a binder to get a perfect consistency to work with. Eggs can have an enriching effect in gluten free dough and will improve the texture and lightness.
Every area of Italy has its own version of a gnocchi dish that can be served with many different sauces. Our favorite sauces for this dish are: a simple tomato and basil sauce, bolognese sauce, or pesto!
Here is an interesting fact: Gnocchi are perhaps the first format of homemade pasta but it didn’t become the potato gnocchi until the 16th century when potatoes were introduced to Europe. They originated in Northern Italy, where the cooler climate was better suited for growing potatoes rather than grain. Originally, they were prepared only with water and flour, torn by hand, and then cooked.
Have fun with this recipe! This is your time to sink your hands in dough to prepare these soft potato gems!
Gluten-Free Potato Gnocchi Recipe
Servings: 6 Prep Time: 1 hours Cooking Time: 10 min
500 g Potatoes
150 to 200 g 1:1 Gluten Free Flour (We used King Arthur)
1 large free-range organic egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Traditional recipe without Egg
Servings: 8 - 12 (depending on the size of your bowl)
1 kg potatoes
350 g Flour 00
15 g Fine Sea Salt
Fill a large pot with cold water. Salt the water and place washed potatoes in the pot. Bring the water to a boil and cook the potatoes until tender throughout, about 30 to 40 minutes, depending on their size. Do the fork test and if the prongs enter the middle without difficulty then you can drain them.
Place flour on a large wooden cutting board, leaving space for the mashed potatoes.
Use a strainer (https://amzn.to/2xFiznE) or a slotted spoon (https://amzn.to/3dJz56E) to remove potatoes from the water. Peel them while they are still hot and immediacy mash them with a potato ricer (https://amzn.to/340byd6). Spread the mashed potatoes with a fork on the cutting board to cool, about 15 minutes. Add the lightly beaten egg together with salt and very gently, mix everything and knead the dough with your hands until you get a soft but compact dough. You can add more flour (a sprinkle at a time) if the dough is too sticky.
Spread out a clean table cloth on your kitchen table and lightly flour with gluten-free flour. You can also prepare sheet pans with lightly floured kitchen towels
Flour the cutting board and cut the dough into small pieces and roll out each piece with your fingertips to obtain 2 centimeters thick, snake-shaped logs. Occasionally, flour the cutting board, making it easier to roll. In the meantime, cover the remaining dough with a kitchen towel to prevent it from drying out. Use your knife to cut pieces every 3/4 inch and dust with flour.
There are several ways you can make gnocchi. One of the traditional ways to shape the gnocchi is by using a fork. We also used wooden gnocchi board to obtain the classic shape (https://amzn.to/2w3F5WP). To use a fork, place the gnocchi against the tines of the fork (or gnocchi board), cut ends out. With a light touch, use your thumb and press in and down the length of the fork. The backs of the gnocchi will capture the impression of the tines as tiny ridges. Keep dusting with flower to avoid sticking. As you prepare the gnocchi, place them on the prepared tablecloth or sheet trays.
When you are ready to cook them, place the gnocchi in boiling salted water. As soon as the gnocchi come to the surface, they are considered cooked and therefore ready to be drained and mixed with your favorite sauce!
We used ‘chef potato” because it has a high “dry matter’ and low ‘reducing sugars”, which make it a perfect potato for this recipe. You can sub with Idaho potatoes.
The gnocchi can still be kept raw by leaving them on the cloth for a couple of hours at most, in this case the cooking will be slightly longer because they will have dried in the air.
You can also freeze the gnocchi for up to 3 months. Place the tray in the freezer for about 20 minutes and then transfer them to an air tight food bag or food saver vacuum sealer, which is what we use. To cook them, simply throw them in boiling salted water without defrosting them first.
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