Ricotta and Herbed Gnocchi with Garden Vegetables
Serves 4 - Recipe sourced from Silvia’s Italian Table
450g full-cream traditional ricotta
2 egg yolks
½ teaspoon salt flakes
Parsley, basil and chives (2-3 tablespoons), finely chopped
100-120g plain flour, plus extra for dusting extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling
2/3 cup (50g) freshly grated parmigiano
Lemon zest, finely grated and freshly ground white pepper, to serve
2 French shallots, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, skin on, bashed with the back of a knife
3-4 baby zucchini
¼ cup of frozen peas
½ cup of podded and peeled broad beans
Lemon zest, mint leaves salt and pepper for seasoning
Grated pecorino cheese for dusting in top
Discard any excess liquid from the ricotta, then put it in a large mixing bowl with the egg yolk, salt and herbs. Add the flour and work with floured hands or a wooden spoon until you have a smooth, soft dough – it should be pliable, a little sticky but not too wet. Don’t be tempted to add lots of flour to make it easier to work the dough as the resulting gnocchi will almost certainly be dense and doughy.
Flour your hands and cooking bench generously and divide the dough into 6 pieces. Take 1 piece, sprinkle it with flour and roll it with your hands to form a log. Cut the log into 1 cm lengths and set them aside on a floured wooden board. Repeat with the remaining dough. Set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. In the meantime, make your sauce. Heat up the oil in a large, heavy based pan, add the French shallots and the garlic along with a pinch of salt and sauté for 2-3 minutes over medium heat. Add the baby zucchini cut into rounds and cook for 2-3 minutes or until they start to colour. Add the frozen peas and the peeled broad beans and cook together for 1-2 minutes. Turn the heat off. Taste for salt and adjust accordingly. Season with pepper. Set aside.
When the water comes to a rolling boil, drop in your gnocchi and cook until they float to the surface. Turn the heat back on under the vegetable sauce and drop the gnocchi straight into the pan to colour slightly and mingle with the greens. Add a little cooking water if need be. Serve dusted with lemon zest and pecorino and with a scattering of baby mint leaves.
Serve with a glass of Pfeiffer Chardonnay.