INGREDIENTS FOR POTATO GNOCCHI
- 3 large Russet potatoes
- 1 ½ c. grated Parmesan cheese
- 3 c. all purpose flour
- 10 egg yolks
- ½ tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp. Kosher salt
- ½ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
Bake the 3 potatoes in a 300° oven for 50 minutes. Allow them to cool slightly — they should be barely soft to the touch. Then, peel them with a knife — the skin should just peel right down the side without a lot of effort. Once the potatoes are peeled, shred them…
Use a large cutting board or a big counter for your surface — cover both with parchment paper.
Put the shredded potatoes onto the parchment paper and make a well in the middle. Add ingredients one at a time as pictured below. Finally, add 3 cups of the flour (not pictured below), leaving out about ¼ cup for dusting later.
Mix the ingredients gently, incorporating them together without overworking the dough. *Do not work the dough too hard, as though you’re kneading a bread!
Work it until you have a big dough form. Wrap that up and let stand for 20 minutes.
The translation for Gnocchi in Italian is “little pillow.” Each gnocchi is meant to be a soft and light little pillow. If you mix the gnocchi too much or work it too hard, you won’t end up with a soft, light product; instead, it will be chewy and dense.
CHEF MIKE’S 3-STEP GNOCCHI-GROOVING PROCESS
This is where Chef Mike’s recipe gets a little different! Gnocchi Paddles are commonly used to cut off each gnocchi individually to give the all the pieces grooves that hold the sauce. This process takes a long time, so Chef Mike came up with a much more efficient gnocchi-grooving process…
STEP 1: Dust your surface with flour. Cut out a piece of gnocchi dough and roll it out on your surface into ½ inch tube. Cut into 6-8 inch pieces.
STEP 2: Take a cooling rake and pop each piece on it at a slight angle. Roll each piece down the cooling rack until it leaves little lines all the way down.
STEP 3: Line them up and cut into ¾ inch pieces. Dust them again with flour and use your cutting tool (not your hands) to transfer the little pieces to a sheet pan.
After all the pieces are grooved and transfered to the sheet pan, refigerate for 30 minutes. That way, when they go into the water, they will hold their shape.
Now it’s time to make your pesto sauce!
INGREDIENTS FOR PESTO SAUCE
- 1 c. firmly packed fresh basil
- 4 cloves garlic
- ½ c. lightly toasted pine nuts
- 3 oz. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- The zest & juice from 1 lemon
TO PREPARE PESTO SAUCE
Put everything into the food processor and start pureeing. Add the olive oil gradually. Keep pureeing until it’s nice and smooth.
Now, back to the gnocchi!
Bring water to a boil and add salt. Now that the gnocchi pieces are a little firmer from being cooled in the refrigerator, it’s time to toss them right into your boiling water.
Boil until they float, and once they are floating, give them another 60-90 seconds to boil. Use a strainer to pour them directly into a large bowl with olive oil.
Gently toss the boiled gnocchi in the olive oil to keep them from sticking together.
After tossing the gnocchi in olive oil, immediately transfer to a large sheet pan. Allow to cool.
*If you plan to store them to cook later, now is the time! They stay great in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, or you can freeze them in zip-lock bags to use whenever you please. If refrigerated, they can go right from the refrigerator to saute pan; if they’re frozen, dip the gnocchi into boiling water again before sautéing.
To sauté the gnocchi, melt butter in a nonstick pan. Cook on medium heat until gnocchi are a slightly golden brown color. Then, add some pesto and a small splash of cream to loosen it up a little.
Finally, add shaved parmesan cheese on top of your plated dishes.
Now, all there is left to do is ENJOY your delicious Potato Gnocchi with Pesto Sauce!
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