Homemade Gnocchi and Ragu ~ Savoury Recipe # 5
Italian husband is the only child of Post WW2 migrants from Northern Italy. His father migrated a few years before his mother. Although he was born in Australia, he learn’t English at the age of 5 when he started school. Luckily the Nuns were patient and guided his language learning, the Brothers guided his high school education which allowed him to undertake University study and enter the workforce as a graduate. His mother was not able to teach him English or assist with his schooling, but she gave him the best education of all, knowledge of the kitchen and the art of cooking Italian.
So begins the Homemade Gnocchi … for those that follow my blog know that I like to visit the Sydney Markets and find great fresh fruit, vegetables and seafood. On a recent trip we bought 10 kilos of potatoes. Italian Husband lovingly made fresh Gnocchi with some of them today. A great way to spend a Sunday.
Homemade Gnocchi ~ Gnocchi di Patate
Makes 6 to 8 servings
3 cups of hot, finely mashed potatoes (ask the grocer for a type that makes gnocchi); 1 1/2 cup of plain flour; 1 1/2 tsp salt; 1 tbspn olive oil; 2 eggs
In a bowl, combine lukewarm mashed potatoes, flour, salt and oil; blend with a fork. Add eggs and mix thoroughly into the potato mixture. Turn potato dough out onto a well-floured bench and kneed gently (about 15 times). At this point if the dough is soft, work in a little more flour. Shape into a flat loaf and set on a floured area.
Now the fun begins. Cut off one piece of dough (about size of a Tennis ball – yes the Australian Open is in full swing, no Aussies left ;( thanks to Federer). Roll into a cord to about 3 cm thickness. Cut the cord into 3cm lengths, you can roll these over a fork to give a ridge or push the centre to give a slight bow shape. We leave as cut.
Boil a large pasta pot and drop 20 gnocchi into boiling water, when they pop back to the surface they are cooked. Remove with a slotted spoon, drain well and place in a shallow, rimmed pan.
At this point you can toss the gnocchi with a little melted butter and add to your favourite sauce – ours was Ragu. The gnocchi should be eaten immediately, or mix with sauce a store in the fridge for a later time. I would not freeze gnocchi.
Makes 6 litres (can be frozen to use with your favourite pasta), we make large batches so we can freeze them, some go with First Born to Uni, some go to good friends.
2 tbsp of butter; 1 tsp of bi-carb; 1 tbsp of salt; 1 kg of beef mince (the best you can afford); 1/2 kg of pork mince; 1/2 kg of veal mince; 6 gloves garlic; 4 onions; 3 carrots finely chopped; 6 x 700 gm bottle of passata; 1 1/2 litres of water; 1/2 cup of fresh basil leaves chopped; 1/4 cup of fresh oregano finely chopped; 3 or 4 sprigs of thyme; handful of marjoram; optional 2 or 3 whole chillies if you like it hot.
In a large pot (10 litre) add onions, garlic and butter, slowly melt on a medium heat and stir through until the onions are translucent. Add all the mince, slowly stir in one bottle of passata sauce. Keen stirring until the meat is brown. Add all other ingredients, carrots, herbs, passata, salt and water. Cook on a low heat for 2 hours, occasionally stirring. After 2 hours remove chillies and thyme. Use a stick blender and lightly blitz the mix to break down any large clumps. Cook for another hour. It is now ready to serve. Or you can allow to cool and store in freezer containers for another time.
Buon Appetito. Italian Husband and 🙂 D 34