Potato and ri­cotta gnoc­chi with brown but­ter and cherry toma­toes

Balonne Beacon - - LIFE TASTE -

SERVES: 4 In­gre­di­ents FOR THE GNOC­CHI: 3 medium floury pota­toes, about 500g; ½ tsp salt for the cook­ing wa­ter; 1 large egg plus 1 yolk, whisked; 185g ri­cotta; 150g plain flour, sifted, plus ex­tra for dust­ing; 50g freshly grated Parme­san cheese; ¼ tsp sea salt

FOR THE SAUCE: 90g un­salted but­ter; 500g cherry toma­toes, halved; ¼ tsp sea salt; ¼ tsp freshly ground black pep­per, plus ex­tra to serve; 1 tbs lemon juice; 60ml potato cook­ing wa­ter; 10g torn fresh basil leaves, loosely packed, plus a few ex­tra, to serve Method

To start the gnoc­chi, peel and chop the pota­toes into pieces, about 3cm. Put in a small saucepan with the salt and cover with cold wa­ter. Bring to the boil over medium–high heat and cook un­til very ten­der, about 15 min­utes, test­ing with the point of a sharp knife. Drain the pota­toes, re­serv­ing 60ml of the cook­ing wa­ter, and re­turn them to the saucepan over low heat for 1 minute to en­sure any ex­cess wa­ter has evap­o­rated. Pass the potato through a ricer or mash very well. Set aside to cool.

While the pota­toes are cook­ing, bring a large saucepan of wa­ter to the boil over medium–high heat, ready to cook the gnoc­chi. Start the sauce while the pota­toes are cool­ing. Melt the but­ter in a small fry­ing pan over medium heat. Cook the but­ter un­til it starts to brown, about three min­utes. Stir in the toma­toes, salt and pep­per and sim­mer on medium–low heat un­til the toma­toes be­come soft and start to melt into the but­ter, about eight min­utes. Stir in the lemon juice and 60ml of the potato cook­ing wa­ter un­til com­bined. Taste and add more sea salt and pep­per if needed. Re­duce the heat to low and stir the sauce oc­ca­sion­ally while you make the gnoc­chi.

While the sauce is sim­mer­ing, mea­sure 395g of the cooked, smooth potato into a large mixing bowl. Pass the ri­cotta through the ricer (or push it through a sieve) and add to the mixing bowl. Add the flour, 35g of the Parme­san cheese, the egg mix­ture and sea salt to the mixing bowl and mix with a spat­ula or your hand for as short a time as pos­si­ble, just un­til the sticky dough starts to come to­gether.

Tip the dough on to a lightly floured work sur­face and bring to­gether in a rough ball. Di­vide the dough into 4 pieces and roll each quar­ter into a long cylin­der that’s about the width of your fin­ger. Cut each roll of dough into 2 cm pieces and place them on a lightly floured tray while you roll and slice the re­main­ing dough.

Cook half of the gnoc­chi in the large saucepan of boil­ing wa­ter over medium–high heat. When they rise to the sur­face, leave them for 20 sec­onds and then use a slot­ted spoon to trans­fer them to the to­mato sauce. Add the basil and turn the gnoc­chi gen­tly in the sauce. Re­peat with the re­main­ing gnoc­chi. Trans­fer to a serv­ing bowl. Gar­nish with the re­main­ing Parme­san, basil and pep­per and serve im­me­di­ately.

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