Saturday, November 19, 2016

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Brown Butter and Parmesan

If you were stranded on an island & could only eat one meal what would it be?

Mine would be a fettucini alfredo sandwich on a garlic ciabatta bun with a side of marinara sauce to dip it in. Now, I've never had this, but my imagination tells me this would absolutely be the perfect choice. 

If it's not obvious, I love italian food. It was the one constant in my life during the whole crazy wedding process. The risotto dish at the laundry the night I got engaged, the lobster and crab ravioli in Chicago at trattoria no. 10 the weekend I picked out my bridesmaid dresses, and the bucatini at trattoria stella on our honeymoon, will always hold a special place in my heart and my thighs. 

As much as I love all things Italian, it rarely makes an appearance in my kitchen. Mainly due to the intimidation that these dishes are only successfully made by italian great-grandmothers and not an irish 23 year old. But with enough gelato and prosecco, I wound up the courage to make gnocchi this week. 

I found the recipe in Chrissy Tiegan's cookbook, cravings. If you don't already own it, stop what you're doing right now and go buy it. I'm serious. Her dry humor will make you cry laughing, her recipes will make you drool, and by the end of it you'll totally want to be best friends with her. 

Anyways, the gnocchi. It's basically fool-proof. It's delicious. It will impress the snobbiest person in your life (I am the snobbiest person in my life and I found it extremely impressive).

1 large sweet potato
1/3 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
3/4 cup ap flour, plus more if necessary 
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup parmesan cheese 
salt & pepper to taste 

Preheat oven to 400F. Stab the sweet potato all over with a fork, wrap in tinfoil, and place in oven until tender (about 40 minutes). Once cooled, cut potato in half and scoop of the insides into a large bowl. Add the cup of ricotta cheese and mix with a fork until thoroughly combined. add the flour a slowly combine until you get a consistency that doesn't stick to the sides of the bowl. If necessary, add flour 1 tbsp at a time to achieve this. 

Get a large pot a fill it 3/4 full with salted water, bring to a boil. 

While water is boiling, dump dough onto a floured surface, sprinkle a tiny amount of flour on top of it, and knead about 10 times until no longer sticky. Divide the dough into three equal parts and gently roll into balls. One ball at time on a floured surface, roll into a 12x1 inch log with the palms of your hand. Repeat with the other two balls. Cut log into 12 1 inch pieces and transfer to the boiling water.

After about a minute in, stir the gnocchi to make sure it's not sticking the the bottom. 
Now is a good time to make the sauce. Grab a large skillet, set the heat to medium high and add the stick of butter. Brown the butter by waiting for the foam to subside and constantly stir until you see the butter change to a deeper color and brown specks forming on the bottom of the pan. Add salt and pepper. 

After about 3 minutes, the gnocchi will float to the top. When this happens, wait about 30 seconds and then drain (but don't rinse!) the gnocchi. Transfer the gnocchi to the skillet and cook for about a minute in the brown butter. Add as much parmesan as your heart desires. With a slotted spoon, transfer to plates and serve immediately. 



  1. This looks spectacular. Gnocchi is a favorite of mine, but the fact that it is made from potatoes always made me feel like it was a guilty pleasure. I will definitely have to try this!

    1. Thank you! Gnocchi is one of my favorites as well. Nothing guilty about enjoying a delicious italian dish every now and then. It's good for the soul!