Gnocchi has been a traditional type of Italian primo (first course) since many years. It was introduced by the Roman legions during the expansion of the empire in modern Europe. After that, each country developed its own specific type of small dumplings.
The use of potatoes to make gnocchi is more recent, and it is very popular in the regions of middle Italy.
For dinner tonight I prepared gnocchi di patate with a sauce made with Gorgonzola cheese.
Ingredients (for 4 servings):
For the “gnocchi”:
- 2.2 lb (1 kg) russet potatoes
- 1 egg
- 2 and 1/3 cups (300 gr) all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
For the sauce:
- 1 finely chopped scallion
- 2 tbsp vegetable broth
- 2 cups (180 gr) crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
- 6 sage leaves
- 4 tbsp whole milk
- nutmeg to taste
- Parmesan cheese to taste
Peel the potatoes and steam them until tender. Mash them with a potato masher or a potato ricer while they are still hot. Mix them with the egg, the flour and a tsp of salt and knead to a soft, elastic dough.
Shape the dough into long rolls and cut them in small pieces. Using the floured thumb of one hand, press each piece to make a dimple in the centre, then gently roll it over the tines of a fork to make a pattern on the underside of the gnocco.
To cook, bring a large pot of salted water to boil, add the gnocchi, a few at a time, and remove with a slotted spoon as they rise to the surface.
To prepare the sauce, in a pan heat a few tbsp of olive oil over medium heat and sauté the scallion until golden. Add the broth, the cheese and the milk and wait until the Gorgonzola cheese melts forming a cream. Add the sage leaves, cut in small pieces, and a pinch of nutmeg.
Once you serve your gnocchi, add some Parmesan cheese.