Potato Gnocchi with Fresh Pesto

October 8th, 2008 - 12:20pm by Slye Fox

After depleting the Manfort of everything except beer, drink additives, and a few hard boiled eggs, it was time to grocery shop and replenish the pantry. The first thing I made with all my new yummy ingredients was gnocchi and pesto all from scratch. Always my preferred method -- I get a kick out of cooking from the basics.

Recipe after the jump...

Potato Gnocchi

  • 2 large potatoes
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup flour
  1. Bake the potatoes at 350° for 60 minutes.
  2. Peel the skin of the potatoes and flake with a fork. Use a ricer if you have one. Don't mash the potatoes. The idea is to have a fluffy and dry result.
  3. Spread the potatoes out to cool so that the egg won't cook when added.
  4. Add the egg and fold into the potatoes.
  5. Add 3/4 of the flour and fold into the mixture to form a dough.
  6. Gently knead the dough to incorporate the ingredients. Add flour if needed to prevent sticking.
  7. Divide the dough into 8 parts and roll each part into a log about thumb thickness.
  8. Cut each log into 3/4 inch lengths. form each gnocchi by pressing against a fork. The fork leaves ridges on one side and your thumb leaves a small dimple of the other. These features help hold sauce in the dish.
  9. Boil a pot of salted water. Add the gnocchi about twenty at a time.
  10. The gnocchi are done about 10-15 seconds after they float to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon as they cook.

Fresh Basil Pesto

  • 1 large bunch fresh basil leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 3/4 cup fresh grated parmesan
  • Extra virgin olive oil

In order to get the best results, don't use a food processor, the leaves and pine nuts will break down into a paste that has no substance. Nothing beats the consistency of hand-chopped pesto. Similarly, don't use any dried ingredients. The fresher and smaller the basil, the better. Don't use the Kraft brand parmesan in the can. Shave it off a fresh block. And use whole garlic cloves please.

  1. Slice the garlic cloves into sections and chop with the basil.
  2. Once the leaves are coarsely chopped, add the pine nuts and keep chopping to a fine consistency.
  3. Add the parmesan and continue chopping until a fine mince is achieved. You should be able to pack the pesto in a firm ball that holds its shape.
  4. Press the pesto into a glass bowl and pour on enough olive oil to cover (about 2 tablespoons). You may have to add a bit of oil depending on how much is soaked up by the pesto.
  5. Store in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, add oil if necessary and give a quick stir. Pesto should be eaten immediately as the flavors break down in the oil overnight.
October 8, 2008 - 1:35pm
lisianthia says:

Damn, and you're still single why?

October 8, 2008 - 1:48pm
bertine says:

Wait, you made Gnocchi from scratch? WOW

October 8, 2008 - 2:15pm
kirideth says:

Damn. My list of things to try making keeps getting longer. This'll have to go after my chocolate ravioli experiment.

October 8, 2008 - 2:24pm
Slye Fox says:

I keep having Homer's "Not your nacho man. Not your nach'--your nacho-o man..." run through my head, but with nachos replaced with gnocchis incorrectly pronounced. :)

Tonight's menu is 13 bean soup. I'm making a bunch to freeze some. The colorful mix o' beans are soaking in the fridge right now.

October 8, 2008 - 2:30pm
Tiffiny says:

impressive! i looooove gnocchie.