Simple Ricotta Gnocchi with Browned Butter, Sage

© Jaymi HeimbuchPhotos by Jaymi Heimbuch. Try not to lick your screen!

This recipe was created exclusively to pair with the 2007 Rhone de Robles from our featured winery, Robert Hall. This wine is very drinkable, great for food. It is rich with fruit like cranberry and blueberry and has just a hint of pepper. It is surprisingly fresh for a red wine, too.

With so much fruit in the wine I wanted to steer clear of anything the least bit saccharin. This gnocchi recipe is quite simple to make. A traditional Florentine dish, it's much lighter and fluffier than its cousin from the north, potato gnocchi.

  • 2 cups of fresh ricotta
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 stick of butter
  • Fresh sage leaves

1. In a large mixing bowl add fesh ricotta cheese and the egg. Store bought ricotta will also work, mix well.

© Jaymi Heimbuch

2. Add cheese and mix well.

© Jaymi Heimbuch via Flickr

3. Bring six cups of salted water to a light simmer.

4. Add 1/2 of the flour to the mixture. Make a small gumball of the mixture and drop it in the water. If it starts to break a part, remove it. If not, let it cook til it floats to the top. Taste it. If it it is too mushy, rinse and repeat by adding 1/8 of the flour at a time until you reach a desired texture. By doing this, your gnocchi will not become doughy.

© Jaymi Heimbuch via Flickr

5. Pinch off quarter-sized portions of the mixture and roll them into balls. Press with a fork if you like, I prefer the messy handmade look.

© Jaymi Heimbuch

6. Do so for the whole mixture and place the gnocchi on a non-stick surface or some parchment paper.

© Jaymi Heimbuch via Flickr

7. Let the gnocchi dry out while you brown the butter. Place one stick of butter in a large saucepan and warm over a medium-high heat. When the milk fats begin to brown, reduce the heat and add some sage. Let sit on a low heat.

© Jaymi Heimbuch

8. Add the gnocchi to a low simmering pot of salted water, when they float to the top they are done. Do not pour them into a colander. Remove them gently with a slotted spoon and place in the colander.

9. Serve in bowls, top with the browned butter and finish with more fresh sage.

10. Expect your friends to want you to make this a lot. I mean a lot.
© Jaymi Heimbuch

Variations

Instead of sage, rosemary is a simple replacement. Or maybe some poppy seeds?

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