Sweet potato gnocchi

There's a certain je ne sais quoi about dumplings. I'm fascinated by dumplings of all cultures, shapes, and forms. From matzoh balls to pierogi, from momos to gnocchi, they are the perfect comfort food.

The fact that they are usually a hundred percent carbohydrate is completely irrelevant.

I always though gnocchi were made with eggs, so the discovery that they don't have to be came as a pleasant surprise. In fact, some traditionalists say that eggs make for a chewier gnocchi, and that is not good. Three large sweet potatoes in the CSA box, some sturdy sage from the herb pot, and we're all set!

What you need:
2 lbs sweet potatoes, roasted (45 minutes in a 450 degree oven), peeled, mashed well
2/3 cup ricotta cheese (throw it in a fine sieve to allow water to drain out, a couple of hours or so)
1.5 cups or more of all purpose flour
salt and pepper to taste

The idea is to make a dough out of the above, using as little flour as possible. To make that possible, use the firmest variety of sweet potatoes you can find. Roast them in the oven instead of boiling. Dust all surfaces with generous amounts of flour and keep dusting.

Bring a huge pot of water to a boil.

Mix together the mashed sweet potatoes, ricotta, flour, salt and pepper. Don't overwork the dough. All you want is for it to stay together and not stick to your hands. Divide the dough into six pieces (a dough separator/scraper comes in very handy.)

Roll each piece out into a half-inch thick string and cut into gnocchi a bit larger than your thumbnail. Then press a floured fork into the back of the gnocchi to create grooves for sauce. Go here for a technique video.

Cook the gnocchi in three batches. Simply add them to the boiling water and fish out with a slotted spoon as soon as they start to float. Place in a platter.

At this point, you can spread them on a sheet, freeze, then store the frozen pieces in a ziplock bag. Or you can saute them in a sauce of your choosing. I melted a couple of tbsp of butter, fried ten sage leaves in it and added 2 tbsp of maple syrup, before giving the gnocchi a quick saute. Delicious.

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About purplesque

Psychiatrist, cook, bookworm, photographer. Not necessarily in that order.
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24 Responses to Sweet potato gnocchi

  1. I was turned off gnocchi a couple of years ago when I had a serving in a restaurant and it was so gluggy that it kept sticking to the roof of my mouth. Yours however looks great.

  2. OMG, it's as if you were reading my mind. I was thinking of making something like this as an alternative to turkey on Thanksgiving. Thank you for the recipe!

  3. Amazing…….they look nice and light in the pic….who cares if it is all carbs…..it is perfect comfort food!

  4. Emjay says:

    I hope you are working on that cookbook! πŸ˜‰

  5. jaklumen says:

    Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow, I could totally make this for Thanksgiving! Traditionally, my in-laws make mashed rutabaga (3:2 potatoes to rutabaga) and I agreed to make it this year, but somehow I think this would be more popular.Can cottage cheese be substituted for ricotta? To the best of my memory, it often is in some recipes, but I thought I'd ask lest it change the results.Oh, and by the way, you seem to have a double post of this. The comments are here and not on the other one, if that helps.

  6. Purplesque says:

    Ah yes, I've had the stick-to-the-roof kind as well. Thankfully this batch escaped that fate. πŸ™‚

  7. Purplesque says:

    πŸ™‚ I'm tempted to joke about molten brown sugar..but I won't. Honest.

  8. Purplesque says:

    You're welcome! I hope the recipe works out for you. πŸ™‚

  9. Purplesque says:

    A cookbook..if I can ever get my mom to write down her recipes for me. πŸ™‚

  10. Purplesque says:

    Mm..they so are. I'm tempted to make spinach ricotta dumplings with the rest of the ricotta now.

  11. Purplesque says:

    Jak, I'm not really sure about cottage cheese- the kind I've seen in the grocery store probably wouldn't work, but you might try experimenting with draining some really well and making a really small batch, maybe? This recipe makes about 135 gnocchi…enough for a gathering of 7-8 people as a side dish.Thanks for the warning about the double post!

  12. Lakshmi says:

    Darn. Double darn.Wish I had seen this earlier this morning (Note to self: Check Purp before brushing your teeth in the morning every day). I just made some boring sweet potato curry today (not that I mind the curry..I'd eat sweet potato any how). Have you tried burning the sweet potato on a gas flame, peeling the skin off and eating the tuber with salt and pepper? Yumm.

  13. Purplesque says:

    Not on the gas flame (don't have one now), but I sure remember the taste of sweet potato roasted in coals from back home. A and I would go to Karol Bagh and get the chaat- roasted sweet potato tossed with green chutney, salt and tons of pepper. Ooh..it gives me the shivers. Thank you for the memories, L.

  14. jaklumen says:

    Then I will use queso fresco, which is very easy for me to get.

  15. Purplesque says:

    That should work- make sure and mash it really well. Also, it might be a good idea to make a small batch beforehand- I adapted this recipe from an Epicurious recipe- some people had more trouble with the dough than others. It is a very wet dough, but if you've made dumplings before you should be fine. Good luck! πŸ™‚

  16. Katiebell says:

    what a great recipe for the thanksgiving…. i think i'll have to add you to my neighbourhood now!

  17. Purplesque says:

    Thank you, Katiebell!

  18. littleChild says:

    looks really delicious… can I have a bite?hehehe… πŸ˜‰

  19. Whoa….luscious…..yummy-sounding………

  20. Purplesque says:

    Thank you! And of course you can have a bite.

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