Fresh Ricotta Gnocchi
July / Aug 2015
From Pam Fortier
This requires some planning and effort, but it’s well worth it. I had rarely tried a gnocchi that I liked before this, as they always seemed doughy. These are little pillows of deliciousness that melt in your mouth. If you don’t want to make ricotta, you can find the good stuff at Italian markets. Make the ricotta the day before you use it, as it must drain overnight.
8 c. whole milk
1 c. whipping cream
1 t. salt
6 T. lemon juice or white wine vinegar
Heat the milk, cream and salt in a saucepan over medium heat until steaming and just about to boil. Remove from the heat and add lemon juice or vinegar. Stir thoroughly and allow to sit 5-10 minutes. The mixture will separate into curds and whey. Pour into a cheesecloth-lined sieve set over a large bowl. Cover the entire bowl and let drain overnight. The whey can be saved and used in baking in place of buttermilk. Refrigerate the ricotta curds until ready to use. Makes about 8 c. or 3 lbs.
This makes a couple of pounds of gnocchi. Freezing them first in an airtight container will keep them from sticking together.
4 c. (1-1/2 lbs.) fresh ricotta
1 t. salt
freshly ground pepper
1 c. flour
1/2 c. parmesan cheese, finely grated
In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the ricotta, eggs, salt and pepper. Add the flour and cheese and mix just until combined.
Flour a clean, smooth countertop. Scoop roughly 1/3 of the ricotta mixture onto the counter. Sprinkle it with more flour, shape it into a ball, then roll into a 3/4- to 1-inch-diameter rope,
trying not to overwork the dough. Cut into 1/2- to 1-inch-long pieces. Place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet as you go and continue with the remaining dough until finished. Refrigerate or freeze until ready to use.
When ready to eat, cook the gnocchi in boiling salted water for 9-12 minutes, depending on whether they are fresh or frozen. When they float to the top, they’re cooked. Serving 1 to 1-1/2 c. per person, this will feed 4 to 5 people.