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Pumpkin and potato gnocchi, homemade

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ChrisFlanders View Drop Down
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    Posted: 28 September 2012 at 06:14

They're here again...! I mean pumpkin, such a versatile item. One of the first things I make is gnocchi, a potato/pumpkin gnocchi. My favorite victim is this "Hokkaido" pumpkin, a small round one with a fantastic nutty taste.

Start with roasting pumpkin cut in wedges, sprinkled with thyme, s&p and oil. Add whole unpeeled cloves of garlic to taste; use a lot, when roasted they are so deliciously sweet! Don't bother to peel the pumpkin, just wash it! The peel will go all soft and is stunningly full of flavor! They go in the oven for 1 hour together with another tray of whole unpeeled potatoes. After that, peel and cut the potatoes in chunks. Just because I don't give measures; the potato is still the main ingredient: I used 4 mediumlarge spuds, I guess about 800-1000 grams. Don't let the potatoes and pumpkin cool, proceed with the gnocchi with still warm ingredients!

Time to pop out the foodmill or your beloved ricer. I used all the potatoes and about 50% of that weight roasted pumpkin. I added a whole egg, s&p, nutmegg, and plain flour, about 40% of the potato/pumpkin mixture. It is impossible to give exact measures because you have to "feel" when the mixture is right! It all depends on the liquid content of the ingredients. You may need anything from 30-60% flour; you need to add flour untill the mixture starts to get together but still feels quite sticky. Do not overknead or the gnocchi will turn out chewy!


 

Dust flour on your workspace and -very lighthandedly- roll a handful of the mixture into a sausage, then cut in these little cushions. If you're in a masochistic mood, run then over the "teeth" of a fork or a special wooden gnocchi device to give them those typical stripes. I don't bother, my little cushions have perfectly homemade looks.


 

Play safe and don't let them go soggy; you need to boil them asap! Get a large pot of water to boil and put a batch of gnocchi in, I add around 20-30 at a time. They will sink to the bottom of the pot. Very little time after they will appear at the surface of the boiling water. Give them just a few extra seconds and they are ready. Scoop them out of the boiling water and transfer to a large bowl of cold water. They will cool very fast, scoop them out and leave to dry. Once they are boiled, you can store them in the fridge... or freezer. They are now also safely ready to be used later in time whenever you need them.

At this stage I got very hungry. Still had this "boudin blanc" smiling at me in the fridge. I have no idea wether these sausages are known elsewhere, nor if there's an english name. Get rid of the skin, cut in slices and fry on low fire. The gnocchi; in a good non-stick pan, warm some nice butter, add fresh chopped sage and fry untill warmed through. I was very surprised how well the boudin matched with the gnocchi. Of course, you can serve gnocchi with a lot of other things like game etc.


 


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Souvlaki View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Souvlaki Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 September 2012 at 06:49
Thank you for the recipe it will be appreciated this sunday, I was planning to knead some homemade pasta, now you helped me decide, this gnocchi  recipe is tasty. 

I have pumpkin in the freezer, may I use it, or I need o buy some? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 September 2012 at 09:44
My compliments, Chris, on another outstanding pictorial that, as usual manages to look easy, refined, elegant and rustic all at the same time.
 
It certainly is that time of year, for this kiind of cooking. Last year, I tried my version of Dave's wonderful stuffed pumpkins, and was quite impressed. I have indeed heard of pumpkin gnocchi, and this would be a very nice addition to my pumpkin creations. It's been some time since I've made gnocchi, so I may give this a go and surprise the beautiful Mrs. Tas with something completely different from what I've made in the past.
 
Souvlaki, regarding your question, I do think that frozen pumpkin should work adequately for for this, but since I have never tried it, I cannot say for sure.
 
Many thanks again, Chris -
 
Ron
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ChrisFlanders View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ChrisFlanders Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 September 2012 at 10:42

I also do think frozen pumpkin would work, Souvlaki, you could eventually put it on a low fire for a while to get rid of any excess of moisture.

Here's today's experiment to be repeated with guinea fowl later this year. I used chicken filets this time and gnocchi I made yesterday. What I did was firstly fry the chicken on high fire on all sides, reduced the fire to very low and covered with a small sheet of aluminium foil. Let fry for another 10-12 minutes and you will have the best chicken filet, still nicely moist... you do need to rest the meat for at east 5 minutes; simply roll them in the aluminiumfoil you just used.

While the chicken is cooking; melt some good butter on very low fire and add a few roasted cloves of garlic (see the first post in this thread), cut in chunks. Add also a few sliced spring onions cut at an angle. Let them soften just a few minutes, then remove with a slotted spoon, leaving as much butter in the pan as possible. Add the cold gnocchi to this butter to warm through, they will take the taste of the roasted garlic and the spring onion!

Deglaze the pan in which you fried the chicken, using a little chickenstock. Reduce on high fire, add some cream and let the sauce thicken. At the last moment, add the softened spring onion and garlic.

Plating; start with spreading a layer of sauce, add all other items on top. Yum!


 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 September 2012 at 16:29
Hey, Chris. Good to see you back.
 
Love this recipe. I'm gonna try it with my new best friend, the German Upper Ground Sweet Potato squash I've been growing at Fort Boonesborough.
 
One thing to stress: The secret of great gnocci is to watch the flour content. You want to use just enough to create a light, somewhat sticky, dough. That assures the airy pillows you're striving for.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Souvlaki Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 September 2012 at 01:36
Oh Clap

I am stealing this recipe, and will use spring onions and leek 

cheers Beer
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ChrisFlanders Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 September 2012 at 05:47
Hey Brook, if Fort Boonesborough weren't a bit out of my way I would gladly stop by and visit.
And you're very right about the gnocchi, that's why giving exact measurements don't work in a gnocchi recipe, it's always different. I do realize that making a "soft light but sticky" dough sounds chinese to a lot of people. Gnocchi are trial and error thingies.
 
Souvlaki; oh yes, leeks, love that veg!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 September 2012 at 15:59
Good grief, Chris. It's only 8,000 miles. An easy weekend. Approve
 
BTW, I totally agree with you about frozen pumpkin. I freeze a lot of it (anyone who grows winter squashes learns to freeze and/or can them real quick), and it works in almost any recipe calling for fresh. But you're right, it will be more liquidy than fresh made.
 
What I do is put it in a fine-mesh strainer and let it sit in the sink for awhile, until the excess moisture runs off. Works like a charm.
 
Something else that should be pointed out, implied in your recipe: virtually all winter squashes are interchangeable in recipes, particularly the orange fleshed ones. So, for instance, if somebody wants to make this, and no pumpkin is available, then butternut squash, as an example, can be used instead.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pork Pie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 September 2012 at 23:52
A splendid plate Chris backed up by simple instructions and classy photography.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hoser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 September 2012 at 02:11
Outstanding post Chris...thanks for putting it together. To answer your question, boudin blanc is exactly the same thing over here as it appears to be in Belgium. A nice white sausage that is very popular especially in the Cajun and Creole cuisines in the deep south.
Go ahead...play with your food!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ChrisFlanders Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 October 2012 at 06:14
Thanks guys!
@Dave; closer to the Christmas period, when I cross the border into France, there are more varieties on the boudin blanc to be found. One of them is boudin blanc pimped with small chunks of black truffle...
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