A couple weeks ago i had some friends over for a gastronome’s event. My good friend Mark was there. He’s a director, kind of a big deal. If you remember, i made Greek Bread with canned green olives and we all learned our lesson from that.
Anyways, I also made this sweet potato gnocchi with brown butter and sage from Love and Olive Oil. This is a very delicious recipe, but it takes a little time commitment. The silver lining is that i halved the recipe (when i type it below it will already be halved for your convenience) and it still made enough so that i could fill a quart size ziploc bag with leftover gnocchi to freeze even after serving 4 people. (They were small portions, though.) One of the things that i hope you have been picking up on is that you can never over-spice something in the Kitchen (that’s short for Hot Sh!t Kitchen. I like to think of it as a place that the kids might hang out at after school on an 80′s sitcom like Bill Cosby.). So far that rule has never let me down, and it does me good in this recipe as well. As a side note, i am responsible for the photography in this post as Erica was busy elsewhere, so please excuse it.
Here we go!
Line a large baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
Place1 sweet potato (yam), rinsed, patted dry, pierced all over with a fork
on a plate; microwave on high until tender, about 5 minutes per side. Cut in half and cool. Scrape the sweet potato flesh into a medium bowl and mash; transfer 1 1/2 cups to a large bowl. Add6 oz ricotta cheese 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese 1 tbsp brown sugar (packed) 1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg(1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice)
Mash ingredients to blend. Mix in1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup at a time, just until a soft dough forms. Turn dough out onto floured surface; divide into 6 equal pieces. Rolling between palms and floured work surface, form each piece into a 10-inch-long rope (about 1 inch in diameter), sprinkling with flour as needed if sticky. Cut each rope into 10 pieces. Roll each piece over tines of fork to indent.
Transfer to baking sheet. (At this point the gnocchi can be frozen overnight and then transfered to a freezer safe ziploc bag for long term storage.)
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add2 tbsp salt
and return to boil. Working in batches, boil gnocchi until tender, about 5 minutes or until gnocchi float to the top of the pot. With a slotted spoon, transfer gnocchi to clean rimmed baking sheet. Cool completely. You can do this up to 4 hours ahead of when you plan on serving them. Keep them at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Melt1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
Cook until butter solids are brown and have toasty aroma, stirring with a wooden spoon, about 5 minutes. Add6 tbsp fresh chopped sage
The butter will bubble up. Turn off the heat and season the sage butter generously with salt and pepper.
Transfer half of the sage butter to a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add half of the gnocchi.
Sauté for about 6 minutes, until gnocchi are heated through and lightly golden brown and crispy. Empty skillet onto rimmed baking sheet; place in oven to keep warm. Repeat with remaining sage butter and gnocchi.
Divide gnocchi and sauce among serving plates. Garnish with sage leaves.
Alright, now for the changes. First, as you’ve noticed, i messed with the spice ratio. That turned out exceedingly well. I almost think that if i had just put 1/4 tsp of nutmeg in the taste would have lacked something. The way the recipe is written it has you cut the gnocchi in 1 inch pieces (10 inch rope cut in 10 pieces). I don’t follow directions that well though and i didn’t notice that until i was typing out the recipe for this blog. I probably got about 20 pieces on average from my 10 inch ropes. Gnocchi i’ve had before is a bit smaller than an inch, and i feel good about the size. Also, i was pretty much going crazy at this point in the night because i was in the middle of trying to complete 3-4 dishes and i had no time or patience for the whole fork/tine thing. They still tasted amazing – so do the fork if you really want to get extra points, but if you’re in a hurry fogetaboutit. Also, the butter used to fry the gnocchi was a bit excessive. I would advise you to start with 1/2 a stick of butter, and then add more if you feel you need more. If i had wanted to cook the entire batch up at once that would be an accurate amount of butter, but as i mentioned before i had a lot of leftover gnocchi.
All in all, this is a delicious substitute for a starch if you are wanting to impress someone or just switch things up for a bit. I want to stress again how i have enjoyed gnocchi many times since making this recipe because it freezes well! All you have to do is boil it and saute it in butter and there’s your effortless dinner.