Introduction: Gnocchi Di Patate

About: I am a Master student for chemical and biological engineering. I love surprising people, so I cook very often discovering my own receipes to surprise my guests with new colours or tastings.

Gnocchi di patate, which means translated dumplings made of potatoes, are a traditional Italian dish. The Gnocchi have their origin in roman times, but then they were made with other ingredients, since the potato is unknown in Europe that time. After introducing the potato in Europe in the 16th century, Gnocchi in their now known form became to a very common dish in the alpine region (the northern part) of Italy. This is because potatos can be grown very easily, even in regions whrere they have up to five months which are cold and sensitive plants, like other vegetables, can't be grown.
Nowadays you can get Gnocchi all over Italy in their special regional variations. Gnocchi count to the so called "primi piatti" which is the first main course of an typical italian menue.

Step 1: What You Need

Actually Gnocchi are very easy. You just need four ingredients:

Eggs             2, but of one only the yolk
Potatoes      1kg
Flour             about 1kg, but this can vary quite strong

Step 2: Making the Dough

First peel your potatoes and cook them iin boiling salted water. When they finished squeeze them through a ricer onto a floured underlay.
Tip: If you have a bowl that is big enough, use it, it will be easier to knead it afterwards. And it is also useful to scatter some flour ofer the squeezed potatoes every now and then, while squeezing.
After you finished squeezing mix your potaoes with flour and the eggs. Now you should have something really ugly sticking to everthing. Add flour an knead the mass until it isn't sticking to your fingers any more.
Don't be afraid if you have to use quite an amount of flour, this is depending on the potatoes, how much water they draw while cooking. Maybe an option here: Cook your potatoes in a pressure cooking pot. I would have tried it, if I had one.

Step 3: Cooking

Now form several rolls out of your dough, about the diameter of your little finger. Cut it into pieces, in the length of about 1-2 cm.
Prepare a pot with salted water, and cook them at low heat for about 4-5 minutes.
After cooking fry them in a pan with some oil, and optional some herbes, however you like it.
Now your Gnocchi are finished.

Note: Although it is a quite easy receipe, with only few ingredients, it will take quite a time to make them, especially the part of kneading the dough until it is non-sticky. It took me about 1.5 hrs to make it.

Step 4: The Serving

Here now you can let your imagination run wild.

My favorite is a garlic-meat-sauce:
Therefore fry some minced meat together with some onions and herbes in garlic butter. Deglaze it with some cream and impissate it.

My mother's favorite is a tomato-meat sauce:
Same principle as above but for deglazing it you use sieved tomatoes and other herbes. A insider's tip here for herbes is garden sage.

Or you can even make them sweet, then add some poppy seeds, grated almonds and vanilla sugar to the dough before cooking. An then why not try it with a caramel-sauce?

I am curious what you would add to the Gnocchi di patate?

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