If your house is anything like mine then every time you make mash you’ll end up with a pile of leftover potatoes.
I don’t know why it happens, but it does and I hate to throw them away. Sometimes I go for the greedy treat of fried mash butties, but more often than not I turn to this elegant, comforting dish.
This dish is like your dream dress… stylish, but takes little effort and is always in season.
As well as being great for avoiding food waste, gnocchi freezes really well, so you don’t even need to eat it on the day. And boy is it a good day when you remember there’s gnocchi in the freezer.
Made well, these are like little pillowy clouds, made averagely (we’re all tired/in a rush sometimes!) they are still a ton better than shop-bought gnocchi. Worth the small amount of effort every time.
So, how to go about it? Just a few easy steps and two tips: the art of making good gnocchi is not too add too much flour and not to knead it too much.
- 2 cups of mashed potatoes (use a cup measurer if you have one, if not try working to about 300g per cup)
- 1 cup flour (again, cup measurer or around 120g)
- 1 beaten egg
- 3/4 tsp of salt – more if your mash isn’t very salted
- Put half of your cup of flour (roughly) onto your work surface – I just work straight on the worktop because you need a decent amount of space.
- Put your mash on top and make a well in the middle.
- Pour the egg into the well and add the salt.
- Add half of the remaining flour (around 1/4 of a cup) on top.
- MIX! Mixing with your hands is messy, but effective. If you feel it is too wet (really sticky and hard to scrape off the work surface) add a little of the leftover flour until the consistency feels right. It should feel like a soft dough, with no cracks in it when you roll it into a ball.
- Cut your ball into 4 pieces and roll each one out into a long sausage – again just with your hands and it doesn’t need to be perfect.
- Cut each sausage up into little pillow shapes – about 2.5 – 3cm wide. You can judge this yourself. The important thing is to make them fairly even so that they cook evenly when you boil them.
- Poke each little gnocchi with your finger to make an indent (keep a bit of flour handy to dab your finger in if you are making a lot). Don’t skip this step or they wont hold your sauce as well later.
- Boil them in salted water for a couple of minutes, until they float then scoop them straight out and leave to drain.
FREEZING GNOCCHI – If you want to freeze them pop them into the freezer on a floured plate or tray, making sure they are all individually spaced. Take them out after about 20 mins and shake them into a freezer bag. Don’t let them defrost or they will clump together! To cook from frozen just shake straight into the boiling water and wait for them to float!
To make the brown butter sauce & crispy sage leaves:
- Get a shallow frying pan and heat it.
- Throw in butter – lots – around 25g per person.
- Add in your sage leaves as the butter starts to foam along with salt and pepper.
- Let your leaves darken and crisp up in the butter then lift out – I use tongs for ease.
- Let the butter cook until it’s a nice conker/nut brown. It feels weird to do that, but it tastes AMAZING.
To serve I usually give each person 10 gnocchi (it doesn’t look like a lot but it is so rich) and pour over the butter sauce, topping with sage leaves.
Some people also like to fry the gnocchi in butter before they make the sauce to give them a little crisp. I tried this (see image), but I don’t think it’s essential, so go with your personal preference.
I recommend serving it with a really nice cold glass of white wine – something minerally like Riesling – and eating it quick while it’s hot!
Have you made gnocchi before? How did you get on? What’s your favourite sauce for it?
Thanks for reading!