Monday, August 30, 2010

New Potato And Rosemary Gnocchi

I wanted to make gnocchi and see how it would fare with a roasted tomato. Every recipe I read said to make them with russet potatoes. I wanted to make them with new potatoes which are freshly dug at this time of the year and, to me, the perfect late Summer potato.

I spoke to a few farmers and they said that new potatoes were fairly starchy and would probably work, so I took the leap and bought some.

The really radical part of this recipe is that I use the skins. OK I should have given you more warning, have you picked yourself up off the floor? I know it's totally insane, right? How could I? The nerve! But you know what? I like potato skins, they contain fiber, vitamins and flavor, they add texture and, besides, why not use them? I think the little red flecks are pretty. So why relegate the peel to the compost bin when you can make good use of it?

New Potato And Rosemary Gnocchi

Chop 2 pounds of new potatoes and boil in well salted water until tender when pierced. Drain and let sit to dry for about 10 minutes.
Work in batches and put the cooled potatoes through a ricer.
In the bowl of a food processor reserve the skins and potato chunks that won't go through the ricer.
In a small sauce pan over medium heat add 4 Tablespoons of unsalted butter and 1/3 cup of heavy cream. Stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until the butter melts, turn off the heat and pour the melt butter and cream into the food processor with the potato skins.

Process until smooth.
Add 1 Tablespoon of finely chopped fresh Rosemary into the riced potatoes along with a generous grating of black pepper, salt, a pinch of cayenne and a 1/4 teaspoon of freshly grated Nutmeg. Stir until mixed.
Add 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan and the cream, butter and potato skin mixture. Stir to incorporate then add 1 lightly beaten large egg and 1 1/2 cups of flour.

You may need to add more flour, since you want the mixture to be moist and workable, but not too soft or wet.
Refrigerate for about 45 minutes.
Roll out the dough onto a well floured surface. I only divided mine into four and found it to be too big. So I'd suggest cutting the dough into 8 pieces.
Roll out the dough into long ropes about 1" around then cut into 1" pieces.
Place the gnocchi pillows onto a parchment.
Preheat the oven to 400F.

If you'd like you can go through and indent each gnocchi with a fork and make them all traditional (I didn't since I flunked the Martha Stewart school of obsessive compulsion, but if you want to, knock yourself out...). I think they look fine like this.

Place a large 1/3 full pot of generously salted water over high heat and bring it to a boil.

Working in batches, gently place the gnocchi in water.

Do not get distracted when doing this! If they over cook they will fall apart and become mashed gnocchi! I speak from experience!

The minute the gnocchi start to float use a slotted spoon and place them into a lightly oiled oven-safe serving container. When you have cooked them all (this recipe makes enough for 8-10 people so I froze half) cover in a generous handful of grated parmesan and place in the oven for 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted.

And here it is with some roasted heirloom tomatoes on top, which will eventually cover your tasty little pillows of potato cheese and rosemary in luscious juice.
These gnocchi would taste great in a rosemary tomato sauce or would be an excellent accompaniment to Osso Buco or rabbit stew.

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