"I absolutely love these light little dumplings of smoked cheese and ricotta, which are usually served with a simple tomato sauce. The centre melts, giving the appearance that the gnocchi are stuffed with melted cheese. They are completely different to potato gnocchi." - Katie Caldesi.
1 quantity of tomato sauce of your choice
250 g ricotta drained
35 g ‘00' or plain flour
50 g Parmesan, finely grated
25 g smoked cheese, such as scamorza or smoked Cheddar, finely grated
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
50 g semolina
Parmesan or Grana Padano shavings
First prepare your chosen tomato sauce.
Next, mix all the gnocchi ingredients except the semolina together in a bowl, using an electric whisk to achieve a smooth mixture. Bring a large pan of well-salted water to the boil.
If making large gnocchi, use tablespoons; if making small gnocchi, use teaspoons.
To shape the gnocchi, use 2 spoons to make quenelles: take a spoonful of the mixture, hold a spoon in each hand and form ovals like small rugby balls by scraping the mixture from one spoon to the other, squeezing it together as you work. Roll the shapes into the semolina to coat them, then drop them in batches into the boiling water. They will float to the surface when cooked.
Lift them out gently using a slotted spoon and add them directly to the pan containing the sauce of your choice. Make sure the sauce is warm and gently toss the gnocchi in the sauce to coat. Serve immediately with basil leaves and shavings of Parmesan or Grana Padano.
Credits: This is an edited extract from The Long And The Short Of Pasta by Katie & Giancarlo Caldesi published by Hardie Grant Books RRP $34.99 and is available in stores nationally.
Photo Credits: © Helen Cathcart.