Pumpkin Gnocchi

pumpkin gnoc

Gnochhis are my all time favorite pasta! I have made several kinds of gnocchis with my Nana growing up and there is no comparison between homemade gnocchis and the kind you buy at the store. That’s why when I make them, I like to make a large batch because they can stay frozen for a long time and all you have to do it boil them.

Yield: 4 dozen

Ingredients:
1 cup of puréed cooked pumpkin
1 cup ricotta (use whole milk for fluffier gnocchis)
2 large eggs
2 tsp salt
1/4 cup parmesan or pecorino cheese
3-4 cups flour
2-3 teaspoons minced fresh sage(optional)
1/4 cup unsalted butter
Pepper to taste

Steps:
1. In a large mixing bowl, add pumpkin puree, ricotta, eggs, salt, pepper, and cheese. Add in 2 cups of flour and mix with hands, the dough will be sticky. Add more flour until dough can be shaped into 3 logs. (Don’t add more than 4 cups of flour, otherwise the gnocchi will be hard)
image
2. Divide dough into 3 logs and let sit for 20 minutes to rest. Cover with a damp towel. In the meantime, bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add enough salt to it so that the water tastes salty (it will make a BIG difference). Let this simmer while you make the gnocchi.
image
3. This is the funnest part! To make the gnocchi, spread some flour on a large work surface and have more flour ready. Take one log and cut it in half. Roll the piece of dough into a snake about 1/2 inch thick, then cut it into pieces about the thickness of a fork. Dust the gnocchi with a little flour, then use one finger to push the dumpling up onto the tines of a fork. Let the gnocchi drop back to the work surface. This does two things: It makes the gnocchi a little thinner and lighter, and it creates depressions and ridges that sauce can hold onto. After, place gnocchis in a baking sheet until ready to put in boiling water.
image
4. Repeat this process with the other piece of dough. Gently pick up a few gnocchi at a time and drop them into the water. Boil these gnocchi until they float (about 6 minutes), then remove them with a slotted spoon. Lay the cooked gnocchi back on a baking sheet and toss with a little olive oil so they don’t stick together.

5. Once gnocchis are cooked, in a large frying pan, add olive oil and gnocchis. Sprinkle in sage and parmesan cheese.

***It is important to boil gnocchi in small batches so they don’t stick to each other.
****I always like to freeze my gnocchis because I only boil 2 dozen at a time. They freeze well in large gallon plastic bags.

The Easiest Bruschetta

20131026-100210.jpg
Yield: 12

Ingredients:

15 Roma tomatoes
4 cloves of garlic
½ cup chopped fresh basil
4 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp basalmic vinegar
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 French bread baguette
cooking spray

Steps:
1. Wash all of your tomatoes and pat dry.
20131026-100313.jpg

2. Cut your tomatoes in half and spoon out the middle, then chop all tomatoes and put in a large bowel.

3. Chop your garlic and basil and put in bowel with tomatoes. Add oil, vinegar, salt and pepper and mix until well combined then place in refrigerator.
20131026-100327.jpg

4. Heat oven to 375.

5. Slice your bread ½ inch thick from a slanted angle so you get “pointy” toast pieces. (I also like to add a pinch of salt and pepper to the bread for extra flavor).

6. Spray pieces of bread with cooking spray and put in oven for 12 minutes, or until light golden brown.
20131026-100342.jpg