I used to love watching my grandmother make gnocchi.
She used the kitchen table as her mixing bowl, making a mountain of flour in the middle of the table, creating a well on top, then cracking eggs in the well and adding mashed potatoes. She turned the mountain into long ropes, cutting them into bite-sized pieces, then scoring them with a fork to create sauce-friendly grooves. After I became vegan, I assumed that I would d never be able to enjoy gnocchi again, thinking the recipe could not work without the eggs. Was I ever wrong! This recipe contains two ingredients–potatoes and flour–and tastes just like the original recipe.
Grandma’s original recipe. To cut down on the prep time, use a mixer that can be fitted with a dough hook. (although you can mix everything by hand). This is one of my all-time favorite recipes and while any sauce will do, I’ve chosen a velvety butternut squash sauce that’s almost as easy to make as the gnocchi. You are going to fall in love with this dish and want to make it for family and friends -it’s that special!
Total Time: 60 minutes
Prep Time: 50 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
- 5 c. russet potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 3 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 10 c. butternut squash, skin removed, cubed
- 6 large cloves of garlic, skin removed, kept whole
- 1T. olive oil
- 2 1/3 c. vegetable stock
- 2 T. lemon juice
- Lemon zest
- Salt & fresh ground black pepper
- 10 sage leaves
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss squash and garlic in olive oil, salt and pepper and place in shallow baking pan or cookie sheet. Cook for 20-30 minutes until fork-tender.
- Remove from oven and place in blender with stock. Blend until velvety smooth. Pour into pan with sage leaves and lemon. Heat through for 1-2 minutes. Keep warm while making gnocchi. Discard sage leaves before serving.
- To make gnocchi, bring 12 c. of water to boil. Add salt. While water is boiling add potatoes and boil 12 minutes, until soft. Drain and let dry. After potatoes are drained and completely dry (pat with paper towel if necessary), put into mixing bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Gradually add flour and continue to mix, incorporating all flour. Mixture will become dough-like. Switch mixer to dough hook (or mix by hands) and continue to mix until dough begins to form a ball and starts pulling away from the edge of the bowl. Dough should be dry enough to handle but still a little moist.
- Rub a cutting board with more flour and grab one handful of the dough mixture. Roll into “ropes” about 14 inches in length and ½ inch in diameter. Recipe should make about 14 ropes. Cut ropes into bites-sized pieces and score with fork to create grooves in each little “pillow” of dough.
- Bring 12 cups of salted water to boil. Drop gnocchi into water about a dozen at a time (to prevent them from sticking together) with slotted spoon. In about 2 minutes, they will float to the top. Once they float, remove with slotted spoon and set aside.
- Top with sauce and lemon zest. Garnish with fresh sages leaves.