Potato gnocchi are an easy entry point into the world of fresh pasta cookery. The biggest issue is drying out the potatoes so that the gnocchi only require a minimal amount of flour to bind them together; the more flour you use, the more stiff and gummy the texture becomes. Cooking the potatoes in the microwave bakes them quickly without any extra moisture. You’ll need a potato ricer to make the recipe, but it’s a worthy investment. You can also use a food mill, which is a little more expensive but more versatile as well. Rice the potatoes while they’re still steaming hot so that as much moisture will evaporate as possible.
This recipe is from Food IQ: 100 Questions, Answers, and Recipes to Raise Your Cooking Smarts.
- Stab the potatoes with a fork about 10 times to pierce the skin in different places. Cook the potatoes in a microwave-safe dish in the microwave on high power until cooked through, about 15 minutes, flipping twice at 5-minute intervals.
- Peel the potatoes while they’re still piping hot (rubber gloves will help combat the heat), then rice them onto a lightly floured work surface.
- Bring a large pot of heavily salted (1/4 cup of kosher salt per gallon) water to a boil.
- Make a well in the middle of the still-warm riced potatoes, then add the egg, 1½ teaspoons of kosher salt, and ½ cup of the flour, and mix. Use a metal spatula or bench scraper to fold the ingredients together, forming a loose, sticky dough (add more flour as necessary, a tablespoon at a time, if the dough is too wet to come together). Knead until just smooth and incorporated (about 1 minute)—overmixing will stiffen the gnocchi.
- Working in small batches, roll the mixture with your hands into penny-thick logs, then use a butter knife to cut them into 1-inch pieces (you can dimple them with a fork or gnocchi board if you choose).
- Boil the gnocchi in portion-size batches until they float (about 2 minutes), then strain, sauce, and serve immediately.
- Note: Any extra gnocchi will last up to a month in the freezer, dusted with flour in a sealed container.
- Grind the dry ingredients in a food processor or with a mortar and pestle. Alternatively, mince everything and mix. Drizzle in the olive oil while pulsing the processor or pounding the pestle to incorporate. Be careful not to over-puree the sauce, as you want to retain the texture from small pieces of nuts and cheese. Season with freshly ground black pepper and kosher salt to taste.
Matt Rodbard & Daniel Holzman
TASTE editor in chief Matt Rodbard and chef Daniel Holzman are friends. Matt has many food and home cooking questions. Daniel has many food and home cooking opinions. Their column is called 100 Food Questions for My Friend the Chef.