The nerves. I just could not get rid of the nerves. I kept avoiding making this for months. One day, I thought to myself, “surely it can’t be that hard?”. Finally I braved myself into the kitchen and got started, only to realise I did not have semolina. The panic and doubt started to set in. Is this a sign, that I should not have bothered trying my hands at this? No, I am determined this time. We ventured out in the rain to the nearest shop and we’re in luck. I was never happier to see a bag of semolina in my life.
Now that I got all the ingredients lined up, I read the recipe once more. I must’ve read it a hundred times before but I really had to be sure. When mixing the potatoes with the flour I knew that I had used much less flour but I had to go with my gut. To my touch, the dough was just right so I went on to rolling it out and cutting it up into small pieces. By that stage I was still hesitant because I knew that they could still burst in the boiling water. So I took the little fluffy pillows gently and immersed them ever so carefully into the pot of hot simmering water. I watched over them like a protective parent and when they emerged to the top I was over the moon. I can relax now, the hard part is over. The rest of that evening was just wonderful as we enjoyed these little fluffy pillows on a cold rainy winter’s night.
For the Gnocchi
Here’s what you need:
400g starchy potatoes
75g all-purposes flour
1/2 beaten egg
Pinch of salt
Boil the potatoes, once cooked, drain and let them cool until you are able to handle them. Grate them coarsely.
Spread the grated potatoes out on a work surface. Make a well in the center. Sprinkle with half flour & semolina over the potatoes.
Add the egg into the center of the well and season with salt.
Knead the potato mixture to form a dough, adding more flour & semolina as you go bearing in mind more flour will be used to roll the dough.
Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces, dust with flour and roll out into 1-cm thick logs. Cut the logs into 1-cm pieces with a knife.
Cook them in salted simmering water. Once they rise, remove from pot and let them cool in cold water.
Drain and drizzle them with a little oil.
For the Gnocchi sauce
Here’s what you need:
200g cherry tomatoes, halved
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
3tbs olive oil
Pinch of salt, pepper & sugar
1/2 bunch of rocket
Heat up the oil in a medium saucepan, sautéed the garlic.
Add the cherry tomatoes, season with salt, pepper and sugar.
Toss them for 2-3 minutes till they soften lightly.
Add the cooked gnocchi and mix well with the tomatoes.
Add the rocket and toss till the rocket is slightly wilted.
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