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13 April 2009

Gnocchi with Prosciutto, Sage and Caper Sauce

I love homemade gnocchi. It is so light and fluffy - not heavy and glue-like as some commercially made gnocchi can be.

It is not hard to make. One tip is not to handle the gnocchi too much as it will become tough. It needs to be handled lightly and it does not need to be kneaded anywhere close to the extent that fresh pasta does. I barely kneaded it at all really.

The gnocchi can be made in advance, dusted with flour and stored on a baking tray in the fridge until serving time. Make sure the gnocchi are separate and are not touching as they will stick together. In fact, for this dish, I baked the potato the day before and then stored it in the fridge until I finished the recipe off the next day. It was a very straight forward process.

Ingredients (Serves 4)

4 potatoes weighing around 230g, each washed and dried
3 eggs
Approximately 2/3 cup plain flour
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
8 slices prosciutto sliced
2 tablespoons capers rinsed and dried
1/2 cup sage leaves
150g butter
Extra parmesan cheese to serve


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Cook the potatoes in their skins for one hour. Allow to cool slightly and then scoop out the flesh. Pass the potato through a potato press and allow to cool completely.

Once cooled, mix the eggs, flour (start with 2/3 cup flour and add extra if necessary) and parmesan with the potato. Season with salt and pepper. Lightly knead for a minute or so or until a dough has been formed.

Mould dough into a ball and cut into 8 portions. Using your hands, roll each portion into a long strip. Use a knife to cut the strip into 2 cm pieces. Dust with flour and store in the fridge until ready to serve.

When ready to eat, bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Meanwhile, heat the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the capers, prosciutto and sage and cook until crisp (it will taste better if the butter browns also).

Cook the gnocchi for about a minute in the boiling water. Drain and serve with the butter sauce. Serve with extra parmesan if desired.

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