Monday, August 1, 2011

Ricotta Gnocchi (from the Washington Post)

Every once in a while I come across a recipe that just seems so incredibly fun and interesting to make, that I feel compelled to try it, even if it's not quick or easy. This recipe is one of those times and as soon as I saw it, knew I just had to give it a try. This recipe is basically from the link below, with slight modifications.

About 2 cups well-drained ricotta
2 eggs
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup finely minced fresh herbs (dill and tarragon)

How To:
1. Make gnocchi dough: Mix the above listed ingredients together in a medium bowl. Add a little flour (I added half spelt and half white flour) until "spoonfulls of the mixture hold their shape while remaining soft"-- about 2/3 cup, you might quickly poach one as a sample to be sure.

2. Make gnocchis: Spoon mixture into a plastic baggie, snip off a corner (1/2 inch diameter), and squeeze one-inch lengths into simmering salted water, preferrably in a shallow pan. Slice off each with a knife as it exits the baggie. Simmer for about four to five minutes.

3. Make a sauce: In the meantime, prepare a light sauce. The Washington Post recipe suggests a simple sauce comprised of seared whole tomatoes, olive oil, and salt (you can follow the link above for exact directions). I prepared a simple marinara sauce for my gnocchi and it was de-lish.

4. Put it all together: Remove the gnocchi from the water very carefully, drain very carefully, and serve with sauce on top (add carefully). Sprinkle with added grated parmesan if desired.

I do not have a picture for this either as I did not think they would turn out and the picture above is from the original recipe. However, these little pastas were quite good and the boys really loved them a lot. In fact, I think the recipe should normally serve about four to six but we ran out very fast. They were not too difficult to make and took probably about 20 to 30 minutes altogether, at a leisurely pace. 

I would like to have used all spelt flour rather than white, but I was worried that the spelt would be too strong of a flavor for the light pasta and I think it would have been. If using homemade ricotta, but sure to drain it well before using so it is not too wet; store bought should be fine but drain any liquid off the top. Tasty little treat overall, but I would prefer something without white flour. Will have to experiment and let you know....

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