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Manuela's Gnocchi di Zucca

Spring weather, with warmer days and cooler evenings still calls for hearty dishes that are able to warm body and soul. Pumpkin is a wonderful ingredient for many Italian winter dishes, such as soups or risottos, but one of my favourites is this delightful pumpkin gnocchi.


THE GNOCCHI DOUGH

 

500g Japanese pumpkin 250g Desiree potatoes

250/300g all-purpose flour
1 egg
250g-300g all-purpose flour 

Salt


THE SAUCE


400g mixed mushrooms, cleaned and finely sliced

20g extra virgin olive oil

1 or 2 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 tbsp parsley leaves, finely chopped
Salt and pepper

BURNT BUTTER SAGE GARNISH

100g butter
Sage leaves
Roasted pine nuts
Fresh grated Parmesan cheese

Fresh ground pepper

Chopped parsley

Place a large knob of butter in a saucepan, add some sage leaves and gently fry 'til 

it becomes a nice brown color.

 

1. Preheat oven to 180C.
2. Remove pumpkin skin and seeds, then cut into chunks and place on a baking tray layered with non-stick paper and cook for 30-40 minutes until nicely roasted.
3. Meanwhile, cook the potatoes, skin on, in a pot of boiling water until soft and tender.
4. Drain potatoes and process them through a potato ricer, along with the cooked pumpkin.
5. Place flour on a board, add salt and pepper, potatoes, pumpkin and egg. knead to form a dough (the addition of the potatoes allows to achieve a better gnocchi consistency because often the pumpkin pulp is too moist requiring more flour.  This can result in hard, floury and tasteless gnocchi).

6. Put a large pot of salted water on to boil. Cut a small piece of the dough and roll
it until about 1cm thick, and then cut into small pieces about 1.5cm long and mark the pieces with a gnocchi board or the back of a fork.
7. In a large saucepan, place the oil, garlic and parsley over a medium heat.
8. Cook for a few minutes then add the mushrooms. Cook for further few minutes, till the mushrooms are soft.

Place now the gnocchi in the boiling water till they resurface, scoop them up with a slotted spoon and place them directly in the saucepan with the mushrooms. Mix till all well combined.

Finally, plate the gnocchi, top with the sage butter, pinenuts, parmesan and freshly grated pepper.

Buon Appetito!