Sweet Potato Gnocchi

from Daniel Larkin
to jamey w. bennett 

As you obviously saw from my Instagram photo yesterday, I made sweet potato gnocchi last night.  It was my first attempt at any kind of gnocchi, and it was WAY easier than the online reviews made it sound.  These were actually a kind of trial run for something I’ve wanted to take camping for a while, but they turned out so well, I think I’ll bring them into the regular rotation at home.

The gnocchi was simple.

  • 2 one pound sweet potatoes
  • Approximately 1-1/2 cups (maybe more) of all purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • Salt
  • Cinnamon
  • Shredded parmesan

I peeled two large sweet potatoes (peel deep, because there’s a thicker layer than you think)

Then I sliced the naked spuds into 1/2 disks and baked them at 400º until done – flipping once.  (I suppose you could just bake the potatoes and then scoop the meat out)

I let the potatoes cool before mashing them, and then I tossed in one egg, a tablespoon of salt, a few shakes of cinnamon and a large pinch of grated parmesan.  Then I mixed in about 1-1/2 cups of flour until I had a good doughy consistency.  (Start with a good heaping cup of flour and add the rest slowly until you can work the dough ball without too much sticky mess on your fingers.)

When the dough was ready, I quartered the ball. I split each quarter again and rolled these smaller dough balls into 1/2-inch dowels on the counter (I was constantly flouring the counter to prevent stickage).  From there I just cut the dough-dowels into 1-inch pieces.  (Most posts told me to accent the gnocchi by pressing it with the prongs of a fork, but I couldn’t do that without mashing them)

With the dough split into such small batches, I was able to boil the gnocchi in rounds as I cut.  I dropped the gnocchi into the boiling water and let them go for a minute or two after they start to float.  When I took them out of the water they were done and ready to eat, but I wasn’t finished yet!

Since I didn’t sweeten the gnocchi dough, I wanted to toss it in something sweet.  And what I came up with was perfect.

  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • Approximately one ounce of pure maple syrup
  • Approximately 3 ounces of apple juice

I just mixed and reduced all of these ingredients until it was a good gooey syrup.  Then I pan fried the cooked gnocchi in this mix until they were golden brown.  I didn’t end up using all of the syrup, but it’s good to have some extra in case we needed it.

The last, and most perfect, detail, was to garnish with a generous sprinkling of toasted almonds. (I kept extra almonds on the side, and people added them as they wanted)

Dude, this was awesome.  We ate it with snap peas sauteed with garlic and soy sauce, and grilled duck breast that had been marinating in John’s secret sauce.  (It’s a secret because even he doesn’t know the recipe; he just adds stuff until it tastes good.  I do know that it uses olive oil, sherry, lemon juice, rosemary, corse ground mustard, shallots and soy sauce.)

Anyway, I ate well last night and it made me think of you.

How’s Lent going?

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