Potato gnocchi can be exquisitely delicate or quite leaden, depending on the handling and care they are given. The secret is to use a light touch and not over-handle or over-work the potatoes once they have been riced. If not cooking the gnocchi the day you make them, freeze in a single layer, covered. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 1 week. Cook from frozen (they'll take a little longer to float to the surface).
Serves 6 as an appetizer or 4 as a main course.
Peel the warm potatoes,then pass through a ricer or food mill onto a large cookie sheet, in an even layer. Refrigerate until cool, about 15 minutes. Mound the potatoes on a clean work surface and form a well in the center.
Add the Parmesan, egg, salt, and pepper to the well. With your fingertips, combine these ingredients with the potato, stirring to form a rough dough. Sprinkle the flour over the potato mixture and combine gently.
Knead the dough, using a downward press and quarter turn motion, until smooth, elastic, and uniform in color, 8 to 10 minutes. Form into an 8 by inch (20 by 7.5 cm) loaf and cut crosswise into four pieces. Cover with plastic wrap.
Clean the work surface and your hands. Take one piece of dough and roll it back and forth on the surface while applying a gentle downward pressure, to form a cylinder 18 to 20 inch (46 to 50 cm) long and as thick as your index finger. Lightly dust with flour. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough.
Cut the cylinders into 1 ¼ inch (3 cm) pieces. Form each into the traditional gnocchi crescent shape: Hold a fork backside up in one hand; with the thumb of your other hand, press the dough against the back of the fork, forming an indentation, while simultaneously rolling it down over the tines.
Lay the gnocchi on several cookie sheets, in a single layer so they don't stick together. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to cook.
Step 7: Cook the gnocchi, in batches, in the boiling salted water. As soon as they float to the surface, remove them with a slotted spoon and drain in a colander. Spread out in one layer on cookie sheets or add directly to the sauce (in a large pan). When all the gnocchi are cooked, reheat them gently in the sauce for serving.
This is the kind of old time pasta sauce that simmers for hours, filling the kitchen with enticing aromas. It makes a big batch, enough to coat about 5 pounds of pasta, so plan to freeze the leftovers. Serve this richly flavored sauce with a sturdy pasta such as rigatoni.
Step 1: With small knife, make several slits in pork shoulder and insert garlic slices. In nonreactive 12 quart sauce pot, heat oil over medium heat until very hot. Cook pork and sweet and hot sausages in batches until lightly browned, using slotted spoon to transfer meat to bowl as it is browned.
Step 2: Add onions and chopped garlic to sauce pot; cook until onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes with their juice, tomato puree, sugar, and salt; heat to boiling, breaking up tomatoes with side of spoon.
Step 3: Return pork to sauce pot. Reduce heat; partially cover and simmer 3 hours. Add sausage and cook until pork is very tender, about 45 minutes longer. Remove pork and cut into bite-size pieces; return to sauce pot (keep sausages whole). Use 3 cups sauce to coat 1 pound pasta for 6 main-dish servings. Makes 16 cups.
How to make your own pasta dough, store pasta..
Preparing fresh pasta from scratch definitely ranks among..
Here are 7 important tips on how to make perfect pasta..
Learn all about how to make gnocchi..
Recipe for homemade ravioli and cheese ravioli filling..
Spaetzle are quite simple to prepare..
Long pasta, ribbon, short, tulubar pasta and stuffed pasta..
How to make Chinese dumpling wrappers in 5 steps..
Rolling, stretching, cutting pasta dough by hand....
Dough in various shapes, stuffed with meat, cheese, fish..
Pictures of different types of pasta shapes..