Rome’n in the Kitchen with Sweet Potato Gnocchi

When I share Italy with you, I feel like I’m sharing a part of my heart. Maybe it sounds corny? But I love this country, its culture, and its people. (I’m only a quarter Italian but I’m making it count!)

Gnocchi is one of my favorite Italian foods, and I’ve finally learned to make it tonight! After about 3 hours in the kitchen (after making a mistake with the proportions), I’ve emerged victorious with a delicious plate of gnocchi (pronounced nyo-key)! Dinner at 9pm (Italian style as well)

Great memories from this dish occasionally growing up (my dad and grandma’s side), and then during my first real pasta dinner in Rome, we watched the chef make gnocchi. (I’ve mentioned this before in my last pizza post):

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*     *     *

Here is the recipe! If you get the proportions right, and set aside the hour needed to bake the potatoes, it’s very simple.

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(Great with cheese on top too)

Ingredients:

  • 1  1/2 pounds sweet potatoes (2 or 3 medium)
  • 1/4 cup sweet rice flour, plus additional for rolling (sometimes labeled “glutinous rice flour”, although gluten-free or Mochiko, a Japanese term)
  • 1 tbl lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sugar (I used maple syrup powder)
  • 2 to 4 tbl olive oil
  • optional: 1 lb spinach, steamed

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Poke sweet potatoes with fork in several places. Bake 50-60 min or until very soft. Remove skins. Press potatoes through ricer, mash, or blend very well. Discard stringy pieces. You should have about 2 1/2 cups total.
  2. Combine sweet potato and all ingredients above in medium bowl. Mix well.
  3. Heavily flour cutting board. Working in batches, scoop portions of dough onto board. Roll into 1/2 ” thick rope using floured hands. Cut into 3/4 ” pieces. Shape each piece into oval. Make ridges with lines of fork. Transfer to foil-lined/greased baking sheet. Freeze at least 30 minutes on sheet.
  4. Heat 1 tbl olive oil in large nonstick skillet. Add frozen gnocchi in batches and cook, turning once, until lightly browned and warmed through. Add oil to prevent sticking as needed.

*Big thanks to “The Gluten Free Bible” for this recipe

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Dough should be sticky but firm before adding flour.

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Above: making oval shape

Below: fork!

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Above: my first batch, a little too cooked (though still tasty!) I could have used more olive oil at a lower temperature. Med-low is probably a good choice.

And now it almost feels like I’m there…

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Cin cin! (Cheers!)

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