Ricotta Gnocchi

Ricot­ta gnoc­chi is not a reci­pe spe­cial to my fami­ly. Alt­hough the dish is eaten in almost all parts of Ita­ly, it is fre­quent­ly unknown to some peop­le. To me, it recalls sweet memo­ries of my child­hood. It takes me back to my sum­mer holi­days at my grand­par­ents’ in the moun­tains of Tren­ti­no, a place whe­re I was sim­ply just hap­py. A bit like Mar­cel Proust and his beloved Made­lei­ne. The­se ricot­ta gnoc­chi awa­ken my mémoi­re invo­lon­taire.

Unli­ke the big city whe­re I was rai­sed, in Tren­ti­no they still always use fresh pro­ducts sourced from local suppliers.

As a child, I loved going shop­ping with my non­na to buy fresh ricot­ta in the dai­ry shop. And then I’d often eat it strai­ght away for bre­ak­fast. I’d spread it on bread with a bit of sugar — a gre­at way to start the day.

I rang my non­na a few days ago to ask for her ricot­ta gnoc­chi recipe.

A very simp­le, yet tas­ty dish. Here’s the ingre­dients you’ll need, and how to pre­pa­re it…

For 2–3 persons:

  • 250 g firm ricot­ta (alter­na­tively you can use ricot­ta bought from a super­mar­ket, even if the qua­li­ty is not qui­te the same)
  • 100 g wheat flour, type 00 (the kind you use to make piz­za). You might have to add a litt­le more flour to pro­du­ce a dough that is firm, but still elastic
  • 2 tbsp. gra­na pada­no cheese
  • 1 egg
  • A pinch of salt
  • But­ter
  • Sage
  • Optio­nal: gra­ted truffle

Bring some water to the boil (sal­ted to taste).

While the water heats, put the ricot­ta, egg, some of the flour, salt and gra­na pada­no into a bowl. Knead ever­ything tog­e­ther with your hands to make a dough. If it’s not firm enough, add some more flour.

Once the dough is rea­dy, put it out on a work sur­face dus­ted with flour, and roll into medi­um-sized balls (or any other pre­fer­red shape).

Sprink­le some flour on the shaped gnoc­chi, and immer­se them in the water.

Add the but­ter and sage to a fry­ing pan, and heat until the but­ter turns brown.

As soon as the gnoc­chi have risen to the sur­face of the water, remo­ve them from the water using a skim­mer spoon, add to the pan and fry in the sage butter.

Sprink­le with gra­ted truf­fle or gra­na pada­no accord­ing to preference.

Buon appe­ti­to!

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