A delicious dinner of homemade gnocchi topped with leeks and a white wine reduction and served with grilled sweet Italian sausages.
My kids love gnocchi. They love saying gnocchi as much as they love eating them, which is pretty funny watching them scrunch up their little noses to make the “nyo” sound at the beginning of the word. This time around, they were sitting at the island in the kitchen coloring while I rolled out the gnocchi. They were fascinated by the process and recounted stories of seeing chefs making them on their favorite cooking shows. And when mealtime came, my little Eclair said Gordon Ramsey would be proud. So I guess they liked them!
And I love making them. This recipe is my favorite of a number I’ve tried. But note well, you have to let the potato-ricotta mixture sit in the fridge overnight before adding the flour, so plan ahead. There’s something almost therapeutic about rolling out fresh pasta by hand (ok, maybe I have a twisted view of therapy!). But it was a weekend afternoon, my girls were there with me, and I had an ice cold beer while making them. That friends, is a fabulous day!
We like to grill the sausages for this, but you could also brown them in the butter before adding the wine if you prefer (or if the weather isn’t optimal for grilling).
- 2 leeks
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Tbsp. minced garlic
- 6-8 Sweet Italian sausages
- 1 c. dry white wine
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1 recipe potato-ricotta gnocchi (follows)
- Good quality olive oil for drizzling
- 6 medium baking potatoes
- ¼ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 Tbsp. salt, plus pepper to taste
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- ½ cup semolina flour
- 2 cups flour
- To make the gnocchi, preheat oven to 425F.
- Bake the potatoes for an hour until they are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. When cool enough to handle, scoop out the insides and discard the skins. Mash insides with a potato ricer.
- Add the nutmeg, salt, pepper to taste, egg yolk and ricotta. Mix to combine and refrigerate overnight, covered.
- The next day, spread the semolina in an even layer on a parchment-lined baking tray.
- Place potato mixture in the bowl of a stand mixer and add the flour on low-medium speed. Once the mixture has come together, remove it from the bowl and cut into fist-sized pieces.
- Roll each ball into a cigar shape and cut into 1-inch pieces. Place on the baking tray and then refrigerate for 20-30 minutes to set.
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Clean the leeks well and slice pale green and white parts into thin rounds. Toss the leeks with the olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Spread the on a baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare a grill for the sausages and grill until cooked through, about 10-12 minutes.
- Heat the butter in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the wine and leeks and reduce.
- While the wine reduces, drop gnocchi in a pot of salted boiling water. Remove gnocchi as soon as the first ones rise to the top. Add to the pan with the leek mixture and toss to coat. Transfer to a serving platter and top with the leeks, grilled sausages, a drizzle of good Extra-virgin olive oil and some shaved Parmesan.