Andrew Dole, RDN, CEC
Everyday Chef, Fruits & Veggies—More Matters
Gnocchi is one of those recipes that you make a lot if, sort of like tamales. Making gnocchi isn’t hard work, but getting them right takes a few steps and a little time.
I’ve gone into lots of detail in the directions (below the video) but there really isn’t that much to do, so don’t get overwhelmed. This is more of a teaching recipe to make sure all the little steps are covered.
4 Key Steps to Good Gnocchi
- Use a food mill or ricer
- Bake the russet potatoes
- Don’t let the potatoes cool too much
- Don’t knead the dough like bread
Why have a ricer or food mill? Because it’s like an ice-cream maker – when you need one there just isn’t a better solution. I’m not one for frivolous extra gadgets that take up space, but this is one I recommend. Besides, they make the best mashed potatoes ever!
If you don’t have a food mill or ricer it’s no problem. A mixer and whip attachment will get the job done.
Baked Spinach Potato Gnocchi Recipe
18 Servings (2 batches)
6 lb – Potato, Russet, Baked
1 1/2 cup – All Purpose Flour
4 large – Egg Yolk
3 oz – Cheese, Fontina
2 oz – Cheese, Parmesan
2 cup – 1% Milk
2 tbsp – All Purpose Flour
2 tbsp – Butter, Regular, Unsalted
1/4 tsp – Nutmeg, Ground
1 tsp – Onion Powder
1 tsp – Garlic Powder
0.25 tsp – Kosher Salt
5 oz – Chicken Breast, Cooked, Shredded
1 cup – Chopped Spinach, Frozen
Heat oven to 400°F.
Bake potatoes until tender (fork easily goes through the potato and passes through center).
- Time depends on size of potatoes – approximately 1 hour
- While potatoes are baking, prepare the cheese sauce
- In medium sauce pot over medium-low heat, add butter and 2 Tbsp flour – whisk briskly until well mixed.
- Cook roux for 1-2 minutes, stirring to prevent bottom from burning.
- Remove from heat briefly and whisk in milk slowly at first. Whisk well, return to heat, bring sauce to simmer and cook for 3-5 minutes until slightly thickened.
- Add Fontina cheese – whisk until melted and well blended.
- Whisk in onion powder, garlic powder, salt.
- Taste – adjust seasoning (remember Parmesan added at very end is salty).
- Remove from heat – set a side.
- When potatoes are done, scoop them out while hot into a food mill or mixer with whip attachment.
- A food mill results in a lighter fluffier potato
- If using mixer with whip, be sure to whip on med/high to break up the potato until smooth
- Let potato rest and steam out for 3-5 minutes
- Beat egg yolks.
- Spread riced potato out onto work surface with dough scraper or spatula
- Pour egg over potato
- Fold and cut egg yolk onto potato using scraper/spatula until all of the yolk is mixed in
- Using 1 cup of flour …
- Spread out potato mixture into even layer and sift 1/2 cup of flour on potatoes
- Fold and cut flour into potato using scraper/spatula, forming a dough
- Work the flour in completely
- Repeat with another 1/2 cup of flour
- Gently flatten out dough.
- Sift remaining flour (1/2 cup) over dough, gently fold and press flour in but don’t knead
- Dough should come together
- Using scrape or spatula, form dough into round shape and cut into 4 portions. Scrape work surface clean and lightly flour.
- On lightly floured surface, take one piece of dough and form a log.
- Roll into a 1/2″ thick snake
- Cut snake into 1″ segments using scraper/spatula
- Reserve gnocchi on lightly floured sheet tray
- Finish remainder of dough
Cooking the Gnocchi
- Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Add gnocchi to boiling water in small batches, swirling water to prevent sticking. Cook until gnocchi floats plus an additional 60 seconds.
- Taste – should not taste like flour or raw potato.
- Using slotted spoon, remove gnocchi from water and place on sheet tray lined with lightly oiled parchment.
- Cook remaining gnocchi.
- Cool gnocchi.
NOTE: I recommend freezing (in a freezer bag) the gnocchi not used in baked recipe.
Pulling It All Together
Assemble in layers in a baking dish.
- Pour 1/3 of cheese sauce on bottom of dish.
- Add all gnocchi in an even layer – whatever you don’t use you can freeze.
- Spread chicken on top.
- Add spinach.
- Add remaining sauce.
- Top with Parmesan cheese.
- Bake at 350°F until cheese is browned and sauce is bubbly.
Serve with a salad or grilled vegetables!
Calories: 293.70 kcal, Protein: 12.87 g, Carbs: 47.44 g, Total Fat: 5.37 g
Sat Fat: 3.12 g, Cholesterol: 64.69 mg, Sodium: 160.39 mg, Fiber: 4.04 g
Photo Credit: Andrew Dole