If I was entering a competition to make gnocchis, I’d be disqualified in a heartbeat. 🙂 Gnocchis are not pasta per-say, but based on my trusty Italian cookbook reference (pic below) they are lumped together in the same category. Gnocchis are more like little dumplings.
The first time I made this, I tried to do it proper, which was by rolling and shaping them into perfect little stumps and then ridge them with a fork. Unfortunately, my gnocchis were anything but perfect. In fact they were all in different sizes, stemmed from my rather inexperienced hands and also the lack of proper working space. The ridging wasn’t any good either, the gnocchis kept sticking to the fork for some reason and I wasn’t ready to pile on more flour.
So for this gnocchi dish, I took an express route. Something I picked up from watching Iron Chef USA. So I can safely say I wasn’t the one set on massacring every orginal form of cooking. The professionals are doing it! I filled a piping bag with the gnocchi paste and piped it over boiling water, slicing it with a knife repeatedly. It works a treat except you get the little tails left behind. Which is why when I said I would be disqualified in a gnocchi competition, it would happen in every form possible. But I might still score points for taste and texture. 🙂 I guess lack of skill is something that can be solved with practise…but this speedy method might’ve just been the final salvation before I was completely turned-off from ever making gnocchis again. And I do love to eat them.
This is a proper gnocchi board (pic above). They are able to give gnocchis the all-round ridge feature they are so synonymous for. Although I haven’t seen something like this here, I actually found something similar and I thought to myself, ‘This just might work!’ (pic below)
This little gadget here (pic above), is something they used to make a local titbit called kuih siput. Their method of prep is somewhat similar to gnocchi and they sell these boards just for that purpose. I have yet to put this little doohickey to the test but I’m pretty confident. And it cost only RM2 for a piece. Absolute steal! Or you can always use the fork method, that still works.
GNOCCHIS IN CREAM SAUCE RECIPE
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1 tbspn olive oil
3 rashers bacon, sliced to small bits
3 cloves garlic
250 ml cream
Milk to thin it out
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1. To make gnocchis, first boil the potatoes with a pinch of salt till they are fork tender. Let them cool slightly. Break up the potatoes into chunks. Place them in a food processor along with the egg, olive oil, a pinch of salt, black pepper and Parmesan. Process till you have a soft consistency. Add the flour a spoonful at a time till the paste comes away from the sides but still feels soft and not too doughy.
2. Put your gnocchi paste in a pipping bag, let it sit in the fridge while you make the sauce. Put a pot of water to boil too. By the time the water comes to boil, the sauce would be done.
3. Cook the bacon in a bit of olive oil till slightly crisp. Remove with slotted spoon. With the remaining fat, toss in the garlic and mushrooms. Cook until the mushrooms are about to become soft, pour in the cream. Incorporate with the mushrooms.
4. Add the Parmesan to the sauce and dried parsley. Season with black pepper. Bring back the bacon to the sauce. Taste. It should be salty enough and would not need more seasoning.
5. With the boiling water in the pot, pipe the gnocchi paste over it and cut the ends with scissors (I did mine with a knife and was left with ‘tails’ on all the gnocchis).
6. The gnocchis are cooked when they start floating. Remove with a slotted spoon straight to the sauce. Toss everything together.
7. Plate and eat while it’s warm.