Ricotta Gnocchi

Freshly Made Ricotta Gnocchi Photo: Tim Elwin

Freshly Made Ricotta Gnocchi
Photo: Tim Elwin

So much easier, quicker and lighter than it's potato counterpart.

Its best to use homemade ricotta for this recipe so you can control its dryness, which is much better for making Gnocchi than using a wet ricotta (as you will require more flour which in turn will make it heavier and more dense).

I have also given you the easy way to make this using store bought Ricotta, but i highly suggest you give the homemade ricotta version a go one day as you will definitely notice the difference. 

Serves 4 as entree or 2 for Main

Ingredients - Gnocchi - Easy Way

  • 400g Potted Ricotta (strained through kitchen cloth or muslin Cloth to remove excess liquid)
  • 100g All Purpose Flour + extra for dusting
  • 50g Micro Grated Parmesan or Grana Padano Cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • A good Pinch of Sea Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 3-4 tablespoons Semolina Flour (otherwise plain is OK)

Ingredients - Gnocchi - Best Way

  • 400g Homemade Dry Ricotta
  • 100g All Purpose Flour + extra for dusting
  • 50g Micro Grated Parmesan or Grana Padano Cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • A good Pinch of Sea Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 3-4 tablespoons Semolina Flour (otherwise plain is OK)

Method - Making The Gnocchi

Add the ricotta to a medium-large bowl, dust in the flour and combine well with a mixing spoon (or your hands). Crack in the egg, parmesan and salt then continue to mix until all combined, It will still be sticky.

Generously dust your bench with flour and in 4-5 batches, place tennis ball sized pile of the mixture onto the flour and with the lightest of touch, roll back and forwards shaping into a log until well coated with the flour. Continue to lightly roll into a long thin log, applying the smallest about of pressure on the top and allowing it to expand sideways. You are looking for logs that are around 2cm thick. Continue until all done (you will have 4 or 5 logs)

Line the logs up side by side (or you can do in 2 batches) and then cut the logs into 1 inch long pieces with a flour dusted blade of a knife (if the knife blade is dusted, it will stop the gnocchi sticking to the knife). Dust a plate with the semolina flour and place the gnocchi on the plate and cover with a tea-towel until you cook them (up to an hour or so otherwise refrigerate for a day or immediately freeze).

Method - Cooking The Gnocchi

In a large pot bring at least 5 litres of water to the boil. Once boiling, add a small handful of cooking salt then add all the gnocchi. Boil for around 1 minute. You will know when they are done as each piece floats to the top. Once this happens immediately pull them out of the water with a slotted spoon as each float to the top and place in a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the bowl and toss the gnocchi through to oil, this will stop them sticking… toss them every 5-10 minutes to ensure they stay loose.

You can now serve with any sauce you like otherwise such as our classic Tomato Sugo or move onto the next stage of making our Nutty Pan Fried Gnocchi with Prawns and Burnt Sage Butter

COLOURED & FLAVOURED GNOCCHI

Once you get a little confidence in making these fluffy delicious pillows, you can start to add colour or additional flavour by adding one of the below when you add the egg in the above recipe. Otherwise if you want 2 colours, make the recipe then split the batch and add half of one of the below to each then mix until fully combined. You may need to add a little extra flour (a tablespoon) when adding one of the liquid colours.

  • 2 Tablespoons beetroot juice for pink or even a 1/3 cup Cooked Beetroot Purée
  • 1 teaspoon Squid Ink
  • 1/3 cup Grated Zucchini (with all the liquid squeezed out)
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped cooked Spinach (with all the liquid squeezed out)
  • 1/3 cup mashed Roasted Pumpkin or Sweet Potato

Either way, enjoy!

© Tim Elwin 2016