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Homemade Gnocchi?

Homemade Gnocchi?
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  • Homemade Gnocchi?

    Post #1 - October 28th, 2006, 5:04 pm
    Post #1 - October 28th, 2006, 5:04 pm Post #1 - October 28th, 2006, 5:04 pm
    I searched first, and didn't see any tips for making gnocchi from scratch.

    The recipes I've found seem to be relatively similar to haluski, which I've been making my whole life, but they also seem to vary pretty widely in terms of potato/flour ratios. Any thoughts/advice would be much appreciated!
  • Post #2 - October 28th, 2006, 6:03 pm
    Post #2 - October 28th, 2006, 6:03 pm Post #2 - October 28th, 2006, 6:03 pm
    This is one of those things that's difficult to put into words, as it depends so much on feel, but here goes.

    Use boiling potatoes, not baking potatoes.

    The Italian woman who taught me how to make gnocchi recommended using an older potato, actually she said it was a dish to make in late winter when the potatoes were drier. That way you don't have to use as much flour. You want only enough flour to have them hold together, they're still a little bit sticky when you roll them out into ropes.

    Hope that helps.
  • Post #3 - October 30th, 2006, 1:16 pm
    Post #3 - October 30th, 2006, 1:16 pm Post #3 - October 30th, 2006, 1:16 pm
    I have a recipe using dried instant spuds. It sounds like sacrilege but they are so much easier that starting from scratch and actually turn out lighter and fluffier than all the starting from scratch recipes that I have tried, my Aunt gave me this:

    Gnocchi-

    4 cups instant mashed potato flakes (I use Barbara's Natural Flakes from Whole Foods)
    2 3/4 cups liquid, you can use milk or water or a combo of both
    1 teaspoon salt
    2 1/2 cups flour
    2 eggs (at room temp)

    Bring liquid to a boil (watch carefully if using milk). Remove from heat and add salt and potato flakes, mix well. Turn the potatoes out onto a floured board and spread out a bit to cool off. As soon as the potatoes are cool enough to handle spread the flour over and mix a bit. Add the eggs and mix with potatoes/flour with a fork. It will be a sticky mess. Gather it all up and knead, sprinkling with flour as needed. Knead until it is a smooth elastic mass and proceed with making the gnocchi in the usual way. These freeze well, spread the individual gnocchi out on a cookie sheet and freeze. Once they are frozen place them in plastic bags in the freezer.
  • Post #4 - November 10th, 2006, 12:24 pm
    Post #4 - November 10th, 2006, 12:24 pm Post #4 - November 10th, 2006, 12:24 pm
    I recently made gnocchi for the first time using the recipe from the French Laundry cookbook. I thought the results were wonderful -- very light and pillowy gnocchi. Simple brown butter and sage sauce with Parmesseano Reggiano over the top and I couldn't have been happier.
  • Post #5 - November 10th, 2006, 8:51 pm
    Post #5 - November 10th, 2006, 8:51 pm Post #5 - November 10th, 2006, 8:51 pm
    So funny - I was looking for a traditional Argentine dish for a potluck, and made these tonight. I did a search on the Internet and found some good recipes (in Argentina, it's spelled Ñoquis, this might yield more recipes) I compared what I found with Joy of Cooking and got these two gems:

    1. Bake your potatoes before peeling & mashing; this yields a dryer potato and less gummy dumpling.
    2. After shaping, boil one up and taste - if it's "slimy" (SIC) add more flour to your mix.

    The Argentine recipe was 1/3 cup flour per potato, salted to taste. Joy of Cooking was a little more complicated - 2 1/2 cups of potato to 1 2/3 cup flour and a teaspoon of salt. I happened to have some Asiago cheese which I grated up and added - it was good.
  • Post #6 - January 28th, 2007, 1:32 pm
    Post #6 - January 28th, 2007, 1:32 pm Post #6 - January 28th, 2007, 1:32 pm
    Made gnocci the other night and thought of this post - I was looking for an interesting sauce that had neither tomatoes, cream nor fresh sage as my pantry was out of these. I found a vegan recipe which I adapted as follows - the chunky bits of nuts make a really nice contrast with the soft gnocchi:

    3 large cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
    1 tbsp butter, 2 tbsp EVOO
    chili oil to taste
    Walnuts and Pignoli (to make 3/4 cup chopped)
    Grated rind and juice of 2 large lemons
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Water from the pasta you're cooking to put this on
    1/4 cup of chopped fresh parsley - a bit reserved for garnish

    Cook the garlic in olive oil, butter and chilli oil for a few seconds.
    Toast walnuts and pine nuts in a skillet until fragrant, then toss them in the food processor or blender until you have a variety of textures: fine bits, chunky bits, etc. You will need 3/4 cup chopped nuts, about equal parts of each type. Stir into the oil with lemon rind and cook for a few more seconds.

    Add the lemon juice, salt, pepper and parsley. Add pasta water until the sauce is the desired consistency. Keep the sauce warm. Serve over gnocchi and garnish with remaining parsley.
  • Post #7 - January 31st, 2007, 9:27 am
    Post #7 - January 31st, 2007, 9:27 am Post #7 - January 31st, 2007, 9:27 am
    Go to Bari on Grand and buy the gnocci...it really is incredible. They have several versions. I like the portobello mushroom...with a little brown butter and sage. They are like pillows from heaven.
  • Post #8 - September 27th, 2011, 7:25 pm
    Post #8 - September 27th, 2011, 7:25 pm Post #8 - September 27th, 2011, 7:25 pm
    I tried the Sfoglia cookbook's recipe for butternut squash gnocchi tonight. I pan fried them in a mixture of brown butter and olive oil and added sage, kale (keep trying to figure out ways to get rid of it), pistachios and grated parmesan. Definitely would make these again (though maybe not on a weeknight).

    Image

    Image
  • Post #9 - September 27th, 2011, 8:15 pm
    Post #9 - September 27th, 2011, 8:15 pm Post #9 - September 27th, 2011, 8:15 pm
    Becca - that looks really tasty even though I am absolutely opposed to the growing and unfortunate trend of pan frying gnocchi, and even more opposed to the also-popular idea to pair gnocchi with nuts and other crunchy ingredients. You and all the talented, famous chefs who disagree with me can keep having your fun :wink:
    ...defended from strong temptations to social ambition by a still stronger taste for tripe and onions." Screwtape in The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis

    Fuckerberg on Food
  • Post #10 - September 28th, 2011, 6:11 am
    Post #10 - September 28th, 2011, 6:11 am Post #10 - September 28th, 2011, 6:11 am
    Kennyz wrote:Becca - that looks really tasty even though I am absolutely opposed to the growing and unfortunate trend of pan frying gnocchi, and even more opposed to the also-popular idea to pair gnocchi with nuts and other crunchy ingredients. You and all the talented, famous chefs who disagree with me can keep having your fun :wink:


    I could go either way on adding nuts, but the little crunchy bits from pan-frying are the best!!
  • Post #11 - September 28th, 2011, 10:25 am
    Post #11 - September 28th, 2011, 10:25 am Post #11 - September 28th, 2011, 10:25 am
    Kenny, as something of a purist, I'd like to agree. But gli gnocchi's kissing cousin, kartoflane kluski, are so damned good browned in butter, I can be convinced.
  • Post #12 - September 28th, 2011, 2:01 pm
    Post #12 - September 28th, 2011, 2:01 pm Post #12 - September 28th, 2011, 2:01 pm
    Hi,

    Cook's Illustrated did some recipe development on gnocchi and solved some problems. You know the story, "Mom's was perfect and mine is like glue, and I use the same recipe."

    The problems are caused by wet potatoes, imprecise ratios of potato to flour and over-mixing. (Sound's just like problems with pastry.)

    The answers are:
      Par cook russets in a microwave and finish in an oven. Peel, rice and spread out to dry.
      Use a 4 to 1 ratio of potato to flour, by weight.
      Add and egg and mix just enough to bring the mix together.

    Tim
  • Post #13 - September 28th, 2011, 6:20 pm
    Post #13 - September 28th, 2011, 6:20 pm Post #13 - September 28th, 2011, 6:20 pm
    Tim wrote:Hi,

    Cook's Illustrated did some recipe development on gnocchi and solved some problems. You know the story, "Mom's was perfect and mine is like glue, and I use the same recipe."

    The problems are caused by wet potatoes, imprecise ratios of potato to flour and over-mixing. (Sound's just like problems with pastry.)

    The answers are:
      Par cook russets in a microwave and finish in an oven. Peel, rice and spread out to dry.
      Use a 4 to 1 ratio of potato to flour, by weight.
      Add and egg and mix just enough to bring the mix together.

    Tim


    Some of this is decent advice, but the part about "imprecise ratios" being a problem is wrong. Trying to stick to precise ratios actually contributes to bad gnocchi. Every potato is unique: no two are precisely alike in terms of moisture and starch content. Par cooking and other techniques can help even things out, but the bottom line is still that you can't precisely measure how much flour you're going to need to develop enough gluten to hold the potatoes together. What I do is start with riced potatoes and a bowl of flour, then slowly add the flour from the bowl, a little at a time, judging by feel when enough flour has been added. It takes practice, but once you get a feel for it you throw out recipes and ratios and go with what your hands tell you.
    ...defended from strong temptations to social ambition by a still stronger taste for tripe and onions." Screwtape in The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis

    Fuckerberg on Food
  • Post #14 - September 28th, 2011, 7:12 pm
    Post #14 - September 28th, 2011, 7:12 pm Post #14 - September 28th, 2011, 7:12 pm
    Kenny is an anarchist - my two favorite ñoqui sauces contain walnuts - the above-mentioned walnut-lemon sauce (I like the contrasting crunch) and I've found I love them smothered in Romesco (though the nuts are blended.) Though I have to admit, I don't pan-fry, your picture is making me want to try.

    BTW, Becca - have I referred you to this kale "salad?" Had it yesterday - we've got regular curly kale in the garden, which works just as well as dinosaur kale. http://www.stayatstovedad.com/stay_at_s ... ecipe.html
  • Post #15 - September 28th, 2011, 7:29 pm
    Post #15 - September 28th, 2011, 7:29 pm Post #15 - September 28th, 2011, 7:29 pm
    Nuts blended into sauces are brilliant gnocchi accompaniments. Just don't give me anything that makes an audible crunch.
    ...defended from strong temptations to social ambition by a still stronger taste for tripe and onions." Screwtape in The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis

    Fuckerberg on Food
  • Post #16 - October 3rd, 2011, 1:14 pm
    Post #16 - October 3rd, 2011, 1:14 pm Post #16 - October 3rd, 2011, 1:14 pm
    Mhays wrote:BTW, Becca - have I referred you to this kale "salad?" Had it yesterday - we've got regular curly kale in the garden, which works just as well as dinosaur kale. http://www.stayatstovedad.com/stay_at_s ... ecipe.html


    I'll have to try that this fall, if (heaven forbid), I get kale in my CSA box again...
  • Post #17 - January 5th, 2022, 12:27 am
    Post #17 - January 5th, 2022, 12:27 am Post #17 - January 5th, 2022, 12:27 am
    Tim wrote:Hi,

    Cook's Illustrated did some recipe development on gnocchi and solved some problems. You know the story, "Mom's was perfect and mine is like glue, and I use the same recipe."
    ...
    The answers are:
      Par cook russets in a microwave and finish in an oven. Peel, rice and spread out to dry.
      Use a 4 to 1 ratio of potato to flour, by weight.
      Add and egg and mix just enough to bring the mix together.

    Tim

    I made gnocchi this evening with a previously roasted butternut squash and no potato. For starters, I used the above ratio (~12 ounces squash to 3 ounces flour) and an egg.

    Yes, I know I was using relatively wetter butternut squash over a Russett potato, so that I had to use at least 2.5X more flour over the ratio.

    Still they were very good gnocchi, which were drained and pan fried in butter.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
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