Man, am I a big fan of gnocchi. It’s easy enough to make. It combines pasta and potatoes, the two powerhouses of starchiness. What’s not to love? So since it’s unpleasantly cold this weekend, make a nice, warm bowl of this gnocchi, courtesy of Teddy Diggs, executive chef of Ripple. In the recipe, Teddy uses a potato ricer. I usually follow the Alton Brown school of thought that “uni-taskers are bad.” But a potato ricer is a fantastic invention. Once you have mashed potatoes (or this gnocchi) that went through a potato ricer, you’ll never go back. You can use a fork to mash them instead, and use a fork to shape the gnocchi (you are forgiven for not having a gnocchi paddle).
Potato Gnocchi with crème fraiche, spinach and shelling beans (serves approximately 4, about 10 pieces per serving)
Recipe courtesy of Teddy Diggs, executive chef of Ripple
4 medium sized russet potatoes
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
Whites of two eggs
Yolks of four eggs
All purpose flour, as needed
1. Wash potatoes, then individually wrap them in aluminum foil. Place on sheet tray and roast in the oven at 350 degrees until cooked through (roughly 2 hours).
2. Remove potatoes from foil, peel and run the hot potato “meat” through a food mill (or ricer). It is important to bring the dough together quickly, while the potato is still hot.
3. Cover the milled potato with the 2 1/2 cups of flour. Beat the egg whites and yolks together. Make a well in the center of your flour covered potatoes and add the egg mixture in. Using your hands, squeeze the dough mixture together, adding the reserved all-purpose flour as needed to help ease the stickiness of the dough.
4. Continue pressing together until the ingredients just come together as one. Do not knead the dough.
5. Cut the dough into small pieces and roll out to a thickness of about ¼ inch. Generously flour the rolls of Gnocchi. Cut into 1 inch pieces. Keep in a cool place for up to 12 hours.
6. To cook, add 20 pieces of Gnocchi to gently boiling, salted water. Once it floats to the surface, drain it from the water and add to a sautee pan with:
3 Tablespoons crème fraiche, room temperature
1/3 cup baby spinach, torn
3 Tablespoons assorted shelling beans, cooked al dente
a knob of butter
On medium low heat, warm all ingredients together. Finish with finely grated pecarino cheese, finely grated. Most importantly, enjoy in the company of loved ones, of course.