Prep time | 20 minutes
Cooking time | 20 minutes
• Handmade Gnocchi | I was taught to make this feather-light gnocchi by a beautiful Italian lady called Patrizia. Every time I make it I think of our beautiful family trip to Italy and all the wonderful food there.
• 1kg Sebago potatoes
• 1 egg
• ½ cup plain flour
• 40g butter
• ½ bunch sage (about 24 small leaves)
• ¼ teaspoon sea salt flakes
• ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
• basil and pine nut pesto (see below)
• 40g parmesan cheese, freshly grated
• Drizzle of olive oil, for serving
Basil and pine nut pesto
• 200g pine nuts
• 3 cups basil leaves, loosely packed (about 2 large bunches)
• 3 cloves garlic
• 150g parmesan, grated
• 1 cup olive oil
• Salt and ground white pepper to taste
1. Peel the potatoes and cut in half if they are large. Try to have them all a similar size so they will cook at the same time. Place in a large pot of salted water and bring to the boil. Boil for 10-15 minutes, depending on the size of the potatoes, or until a skewer easily goes into them.
2. Drain the potatoes. Make sure they are very dry. Put the potatoes through a potato ricer – it is important that they are mashed very finely. Scatter the flour over the potatoes, add the egg, and stir with a wooden spoon until it comes together in a dough.
3. Flour a work surface and turn the dough out. If it is very sticky, add a little more flour. Gently knead the dough for only as long as is necessary to bring it together in a smooth mass. Roll the dough into a large sausage and cut it into eight pieces. Roll one piece into a sausage about the thickness of your thumb and cut into 2cm lengths. Place the gnocchi onto a heavily floured tray. Repeat this process with the remaining pieces of dough.
4. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a rolling boil. Drop the gnocchi in. In a couple of minutes, they will start to bob to the surface. Once they are floating, they are cooked. Lift very gently out of the water with a wooden spoon and drain. Place into a large bowl containing the pesto and when they are all cooked, toss to coat. Serve into warmed bowls and top with a sprinkle of parmesan.
PESTO | Place the pine nuts in a fry pan over medium heat and toss or stir them until they are light golden brown. Remove to the bowl of a food processor. Add the basil, garlic and parmesan and process to a paste. With the motor running, add the oil in a stream. When everything is combined, season with salt and pepper and stir through. To store, place the pesto in a glass jar and keep in the fridge.