I promised you this recipe before I went away to China and forgot so here it is. Gnocchi is so simple to make at home and it tastes 100 times better than the shop bought version. It’s hard to write a recipe for it as such because I go by how the dough feels and it’s never exact, ideally you want to use as less flour as possible to make it lighter. To do this I mix the egg, ricotta and purée and Parmesan with a little flour at a time until it gets to manageable consistency, you need to be able to roll it into ropes and cut it and then roll it so it can’t be too wet but you don’t want it too dry. It sounds difficult but it’s just a case of judgement. To help with this I would say use about 95gram of flour to start with and gradually add more. I have said 1 and 1-4 cups but you may find you don’t need that much. As soon as it feels like you are able to shape it then that’s when I would stop adding the four.
Squash and ricotta gnocchi
to make the dough you will need
½ heaped cup of pumpkin puree (see notes below)
95g flour to start then adding more until it forms a firm dough (up to 1 and 1/4 cups)
250g ricotta drained well
salt and pepper
50 grated parmesan
First mix the pumpkin, ricotta and egg together in a large bowl, then add the grated parmesan and mix. Add about ¾ cup of flour then mix together, if needed add a little more flour at a time until it is just manageable enough to work with. flour the work surface and cut the dough into four and roll each piece out into long thin ropes and cut into chunks then roll on a gnocchi paddle and set aside on a floured tray. To cook add to boiling water, once it floats let it boil for another minute then drain. Then add to a pan with brown butter or olive oil and cook until golden. And use as you wish. I don’t like to give the exact flour amount as I feel that the less you can use the better and it all depends on how absorbent the flour is, how well drained the puree and ricotta is, you want it to be a wet but manageable dough that you can cut and roll.
i used this gnocchi with a marinara sauce and baked it with mozzarella and mascarpone it was delicious.
To make really delicious pumpkin purée I like to roast it with olive oil, herbs and garlic cloves. Cut the squash in to quarters I make a big batch with three small squash at a time. You can remove the seeds first or roast it whole and remove them later. Drizzle with olive oil and add 4 or 5 cloves of garlic still in its skin and add some herbs like thyme and sage and season with salt And pepper, roast for 45 minutes then check it with a fork to see if it’s tender if not roast for a further 10 to 15 minutes. Push the roasted garlic out of its skins and place in a food processor, scrape the seeds out and discard then Scoop out the pumpkin flesh and add to the processor and discard the skins. Add the herbs from the tray and purée until smooth.
If you don’t have pumpkin use puréed sweet potato instead.