Gnocchi Or Gnudi

Posted on: March 25, 2015   |   Posted in: Recipes

Gnocchi uncooked on floured dark brown cutting board

Light As Air Potato Gnocchi Recipe At The Wickwood Inn Bed & Breakfast In Saugatuck

These lovely light pillows are the easiest pasta of all so we make at Wickwood Inn them quite regularly. Many recipes call for boiling the potatoes. We prefer less moisture, so we bake the potatoes instead. That way, the gnocchi is nice and light. Our next trick is to ultimately add as little flour to the gnocchi as possible so that they may be served with a very light sauce. At Wickwood, we prefer a Creamy Sage Sauce, Pesto and Parmigiano Reggiano, or Sage & Brown Butter.



Gnocchi Recipe

1 pound white floury baking potatoes (Idaho), medium to large
¼-½ cup all purpose flour
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg, beaten lightly
Extra virgin olive oil
Parmigiano Reggiano, grated


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Bake the potatoes, with their skins on, for 35-40 minutes until slightly soft. Cut in half on a clean surface and while still hot (holding the potato half with a hot pad) use a spoon to scoop the inside of the potato into a bowl. With the back of the tongs of a fork break up the potato until lumps are gone.
  2. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of flour over the hot potatoes and quickly work it into them with the back of the fork’s tongs. Continue to add flour until the potatoes seem dry and fluffy, using as little flour as possible. Add 1 tablespoon sea salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Make a well in the center; add the beaten egg and using your hands rapidly to form a smooth, soft dough. Do not overwork the dough or you will make the gnocchi too dense. Divide the dough into four.
  3. Lightly sprinkle flour on a work surface and roll the dough into thin sausage-shaped lengths (½ inch in diameter) and cut them into 1 inch pieces. Press each piece against the prongs of a fork to make little ridges on one side. This shape holds the sauce to the gnocchi.
  4. Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil. Boil the gnocchi in batches (not crowding them too much) for approximately 3 minutes or until they rise to the surface. Taste one to make sure they are cooked through, then remove with a slotted spoon to a warm dish and toss in a little extra virgin olive oil and Parmigiano Regianno or a rich Tomato Sauce.
  5. Gnudi (Naked Dumplings) with Sage & Butter Sauce

The Spotted Pig in New York’s Greenwich Village has made ardent fans of this ethereal dish. Our guess is that April Bloomfield learned it when she worked at London’s River Café and then like all great cooks, improved upon it. We’re very glad that she imported this to our shores as it’s quite addictive … and so easy to make (with our own adjustments), once you know the secrets.



Gnudi Recipe

3 cups fresh ricotta (sheep’s if possible, but always whole milk)
1/3 cup semolina flour* (durum wheat)
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour plus 1/3 cup for dredging
2 whole eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup Parmigiano Reggiano, grated and only the best quality (packed)
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
2 sticks unsalted butter, melted or browned
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons small fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped, or 40 whole
1½ cups freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano


  1. Strain the ricotta in a sieve over a bowl until no more liquid drips out. Put it into a bowl with the semolina, 2 tablespoons flour, eggs, and Parmigiano and beat it with a whisk until it becomes light and fluffy. Grate in the nutmeg, salt and pepper and stir.
  2. Place the remaining 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour in a shallow bowl. Using floured fingers, pinch about a tablespoon of the mixture and form into a little ball/pillow shape. Dredge each through the flour in the bowl and onto a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Continue until you’ve made as many gnocchi shaped pieces as you can. Cover with another sheet of parchment and refrigerate for 3-4 hours.
  3. Cook the gnudi in batches of 10-12 each in 2 large pots of boiling salted water for 3 minutes, or until they rise to the surface. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a medium sized skillet over medium high heat until it is foaming. Add 2-3 tablespoons pasta water, the lemon zest, sage leaves, and blend until an emulsion forms and the sage is crisp. Remove the gnudi from the water with a slotted spoon to warmed dishes and gently cover with melted butter, sage leaves and a sprinkling of freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano.
  4. NOTE: If the gundi batches have become cool, pop them back into the melted sage butter for just a moment before plating them and sprinkling with Parmigiano. Swooning acceptable.

* Semolina is the coarse, purified wheat middlings of durum wheat used in making pasta, and also used for breakfast cereals and puddings.

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