HELLO everyone. I hope you all spent a peaceful and pleasant Easter.
I spent the weekend down in Suffolk, where my big discovery was that a hot cross bun can be made even more delightful with the addition of a couple of rashers of grilled bacon.
But I digress. Time to get cooking. Today’s recipe is a joy to make and even more wonderful to eat. We’re helping ourselves to a big bowl of gnocchi.
Gnocchi are delicious savoury dumplings, served either poached in stock or water, or fried in butter, so the exterior crispy coating yields a soft, pillowy centre.
The recipes are many and varied – originally the recipe is thought to have travelled back to Rome from the Middle East, but it’s now firmly rooted in classic Italian cuisine.
The little soft parcels are made either with potato, semolina or even bread, but we’re sticking to the classic Northern-central Italian recipe, which uses big floury baking potatoes, fresh egg, and pasta flour.
Many purists eat their gnocchi as unadorned as possible, with a little butter and Parmesan, but they are excellent with tomato sauces, or silky purees (butternut squash, perhaps) too.
I like a sauce of deep-roast tomatoes, spiked with black olives and oregano, but it’s entirely up to you.
These little guys also go well as an accompaniment to grilled or roast meats.
Serve a few pan-fried gnocchi with a big chargrilled veal chop and some wilted greens, and you’re laughing.
One thing – you will need asbestos hands! The potato should be scooped out as quickly as possible when the spuds come out of the oven. Sorry!