My life just got a helluva lot better; I learned how to make gluten free gnocchi! Incidentally, this was number 20 on my 35 Before 35 List so I am doubly happy!
For those of you not in the know about gnocchi, let me introduce you. Gnocchi are small potato dumplings boiled and served with any kind of sauce you like. They are best described as small pillows of heaven.
The problem with gnocchi is that the ones you find in restaurants are often laced with wheat flour, which we all know makes my stomach very angry.
Enter Anna, the Italian Mamma.
Anna is a fantastic woman who lives in Tuscany and was in charge of feeding a bunch of hungry women during my yoga retreat last month. She also gave out lots of hugs and kisses on the head and even Italian cooking lessons, so she is pretty much my favorite person in the world right now.
She invited all of us into her kitchen to watch her cook pasta from scratch and when she mentioned that she would be making gluten-free gnocchi from scratch I just about died from excitement.
So here is how you make amazing gluten-free gnocchi:
First, you boil a bunch of potatoes. I am sure some varieties are better than others, but we used the small white ones with very thin skins (we don’t get the giant Idaho potatoes ’round these parts) and they were delish.
Anna says you should boil them for about 40 minutes but that will vary depending on how many spuds you have. Just boil them until they are soft when poked with a fork.
Then you peel them with your hands since the skin slides right off.
Once the potatoes are skinned you put them through a ricer like so:
Then you add enough eggs to bind the potatoes. For a large bowl of potatoes we used two eggs.
I would like to draw your attention to two things in the photo below.
One: Can you see how orange the egg yolks are? Those are eggs fresh from the farm and they are amazing.
Two: I am totally taking credit for the hard work of others in this photo. The other ladies riced the potatoes while I took pictures, then I tossed my camera to another girl, grabbed the bowl and said “Here, take my picture so it looks like I did this!” See that smile? It’s the smile of an impostor.
After you have mixed the eggs with the potatoes you start throwing in your rice flour (or any other flour you like, wheat flour is the norm). You want just enough flour to make the dough a little drier than sugar cookie dough.
When the dough is ready you roll it out in long strips. You want the rolls to be about the circumference of one of your fingers. If it is too long just chop the roll in half, easy-peasy.
Here you can see Anna’s hands moving lightening quick as she makes her rolls. you can also see that she has a giant mound of flour in front of her to toss the gnocci in after she has cut them.
So once your rolls are as thick as a finger you take a knife or one of those choppy things and chop the roll into little pieces about half an inch long. Then you toss the little pieces in the flour (to keep them from sticking together) and set them to the side.
When you are done just drop the first batch into boiling water and wait a few minutes. Seriously, only a few, like three minutes.
The gnocchi float when they are done.
Just skim the floaters off the top and dump them in a bowl with a little olive oil.
Then you serve the gnocchi with whatever sauce you like. My favorite is a cheese sauce or a basic meat sauce.