Gnocchi with Tomato Basil Sauce
If you are looking for an easy yet homemade pasta recipe then this gnocchi with tomato basil sauce will surely not disappoint. It is really two of my previous recipes combined as this is my favorite way of eating fresh gnocchi. You can use any sauce you like but I prefer a light fresh tomato sauce like this one to serve on the gnocchi. I also have links to the gnocchi recipe here and the tomato basil sauce here, if you want to make either to serve on a different pasta or with a different sauce.
Gnocchi with Tomato Basil Sauce
- 1 potato ricer
for the Gnocchi
- 4 large Russet potatoes *wash but leave the skin on
- 2 large eggs
- 3 cups all purpose flour *more if needed
- 1 tsp fine salt
- dash white pepper optional
For The Tomato Basil Sauce
- 1-15 oz can San Marzano whole tomatoes, peeled Any good Italian tomato will work
- 3 cloves fresh garlic, sliced thin
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin Olive Oil
- 6 leaves Fresh Basil, whole
- 1/4 tsp Kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp Fresh ground black pepper
- Fresh parmesan cheese *to garnish
For the Gnocchi
- Wash the potatoes and put them in a medium pot, cover with cold water Cook the potatoes until fork tender (about 40 minutes) Remove the potatoes from the water and let them sit until they are cool enough to handle.
- As soon as you are able to handle them, remove the peels by scraping them off. Rice the potatoes (the hotter the potatoes are the fluffier the riced potatoes will be). Spread the riced potatoes out into a thin layer to cool. Expose as much of the potato as you can to the air.
- Put a large pot of salted water (new, clean water), on to boil over high heat.
- On your cool surface, gather the riced potatoes into a loose mound and make a well in the center.
- In a small bowl, beat the eggs, salt and pepper Pour the eggs into the well and start working the potatoes and eggs together while gradually adding as much flour as necessary to form a firm but moist dough. Use your hands and stop often to scrape up any dough that has stuck to the work surface and incorporate back into the dough. The dough should take no more than 10 minutes to come together. Do not overwork the dough as it will become tough and heavy. The less flour you use the lighter and fluffier the gnocchi will be.
- As you work the dough, dust it, your hands and the work surface lightly with flour when the dough starts to feel sticky. cut the dough into 4 equal portions and using your outstretched hands, roll each portion into a long rope about 1/2" thick. Cut the rope into pieces about 1/2" wide and sprinkle them with more flour.
- At this time you can form the pieces into a ball, or leave them long and press and roll them down the tines of a fork with your thumb to create ridges. Dip your thumb in more flour if needed to prevent the dough from sticking. Place the gnocchi on a baking sheet with a lightly floured tea towel or parchment paper. Repeat for the other 3 balls of dough.
- The gnocchi must be cooked or frozen at this point To cook the gnocchi drop them into the rapidly boiling, salted water. Once they float to the top they are done. Remove them with a slotted spoon into your waiting sauce.
- If you want to freeze the gnocchi, place the entire tray in the freezer for 4 hours or overnight. Once the gnocchi is frozen, remove from the tray and place in freezer bags. The gnocchi can be cooked from frozen. Do not thaw, once they float, they're ready for the sauce.
For the Tomato Basil Sauce
- Heat the olive oil over med heat and add the thinly sliced garlic, stirring until the garlic becomes fragrant, but do not let it burn.
- Once the garlic is fragrant add the canned tomatoes.
- Using your hand (or a wooden spoon), squish the tomatoes to break them up in the pan.Add the whole basil leaves and reduce the heat to low, let the sauce simmer for 10-15 minutes for the flavors to combine.
- Add salt and pepper, taste for seasoning (adjust if necessary)
- While the sauce is simmering, cook your pasta and drain (reserve the water)
- The fresh gnocchi should only take 3-5 minutes to cook. Once it floats to the top of the water, it is done. Remove and add to your waiting sauce and toss to combine.
- Add a ladle of pasta water, this will also help coat the pasta.
- Serve and garnish with freshly grated parmesan cheese and a sprig of fresh basil.