You couldn’t have asked for better weather over this four-day Easter long weekend. I’m delighted to say that I’ve spent the majority of this break in hermitage; sleeping-in until midday, leafing leisurely through cookbooks, pilates at home and pottering around the kitchen. Its been a good opportunity for me to take a break from the hustle and bustle of my daily schedule and re-focus with some me-time.
I’ve been wanting to make this recipe for some time, ever since my friend Kulinary Adventures of Kath got me Delicious: Home Cooking by Valli Little for my birthday last year. Gnudi is a type of gnocchi made from ricotta, resulting in fluffy dumplings that are much lighter than the potato version. I have never made potato gnocchi before, but I can imagine that there would also be a lot of fuss in the peeling, boiling, mashing and cooling of potatoes. I may leave that as a project for another day…
Sage burnt butter sauce is one of the greatest sauces ever invented, and my first taste of it was with my Pumpkin Ravioli. Don’t get turned off by the amount of butter, as it does “cook off” once it starts to brown, and you are left with only a little butter sauce at the end. Nonetheless, I probably wouldn’t recommend you eat this recipe on a regular basis, as it is primarily based on ricotta and Parmesan cheese, so while your tastebuds will be delighted, your waistline will not be!
To serve two, you will need:
- 75g baby spinach leaves, stems removed;
- 180g ricotta, well drained;
- pinch of ground nutmeg;
- 1/3 cup (30g) finely grated Parmesan, plus extra to serve;
- One egg yolk, lightly beaten;
- 1/4 cup (37g) plain flour, sifted, plus extra to dust;
- 50g unsalted butter;
- 8 sage leaves;
- Freshly cracked black peppercorns, to serve.
Place the spinach leaves into a heatproof bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover the leaves. Add a pinch of salt and stir, cooking for a minute or so until just wilted. Drain and refresh under cold water, then squeeze out as much liquid as possible. It’s fairly depressing to see how little spinach there is left over!
Finely chop the spinach, then place in a bowl with the ricotta, nutmeg, Parmesan and egg. Season and stir to combine, then mix in the flour.
The mixture should be slightly sticky, but not too wet – add a little more flour if you think you need it. Shape the ricotta mixture into walnut-sized balls, then lightly dust with flour.
In batches, cook the gnudi in a small saucepan of salted, simmering water for 1-2 minutes or until they rise to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon, drain and set aside on a plate.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a non-stick frypan over medium heat. Add the sage and cook for 2-3 minutes until the sage is crisp and the butter is just beginning to brown.
Add the gnudi to the frypan and gently toss to combine.
Divide the gnudi and sage burnt butter among the plates and serve sprinkled with extra Parmesan and freshly cracked black pepper.
Enjoy your delightfully short week, lovelies… on Friday I’ll have my review up for HotStar fried chicken, which I only recently discovered has come all the way from the mother-country Taiwan to Sydney! Here’s to schnitzel the size of your face… ;)