A classic Italian dish, potato gnocchi is one the best easy recipes that requires only a few ingredients including potatoes, egg yolk, flour, and Parmesan cheese. The gnocchi is dressed with pesto sauce made with fresh basil, garlic, and olive oil. His potato dumpling makes a fun snack, appetizer or side dish to Italian meals. This also makes a delicious substitute to the regular mashed potatoes and a healthier alternative to French fries.
You can make the pesto sauce ahead of time so that it develops in flavor as the ingredients meld together. To make the gnocchi, the potatoes are boiled, peeled, and then mashed and combined with whole eggs, flour, salt, and Parmesan. You can also flavor the gnocchi with nutmeg for a bit of spice. The ingredients should be well combined until you get a smooth and even consistency. Use a potato masher or a fork to get the desired consistency. You can also pass the boiled and peeled potatoes through a sieve to get any lumps out. Use the back of a spoon or a spatula to press out the mashed potatoes.
The potato mixture is rolled out and sliced into balls, dusted with a bit of flour and cooked in boiled salted water. While it sounds simple enough, making gnocchi requires technique so as not to ruin it. Done wrong, it might turn out soggy or rubbery. The timing is crucial when cooking the potatoes or they may end up crumbly. The potato dumpling should be delicately handled and shaped. Use a sharp knife to cut the rolls into soft pillows. Press the lines of the fork on the surface pillows with a light yet confident touch. Press down on the fork against the pillow with your thumb. The dumpling should form into a semi-C shape with ridges on the surface where the pesto sauce will stick.
1 1/3 lbs. potatoes (with skins intact)
1 egg yolk
2/3 cup flour
1.8 oz. Parmesan cheese
pistou (fresh basil, garlic, olive oil)
1. Pour olive oil in the blender and add the garlic first and then the pine nuts. Blend. Add the basil and then the Parmesan cheese. Pulse very quickly and place in a bowl then set aside.
2. Boil the potatoes in water with the skin still on until tender. Peel them after cooked and mash them with a fork in a large bowl. Add flour, whole eggs, some salt and Parmesan. Blend all the ingredients well until you get a smooth and even consistency.
3. With some flour, roll the dough in the shape of bread sticks. Using a fork, press the surface lightly to make ridges on the surface. Cook the dumplings in boiling water with nothing but salted water. Cook for just one minute. When the gnocchi floats to the surface this means they are done.
4. Drain gnocchi, arrange them on a plate and dress them with some pesto sauce.