Homemade Gnocchi with Vodka Cream Sauce

We’re not nature people.

We’re noodle people.

When we get a free day in the summertime, and we’re left to our own devices, we’d rather craft a labor-intensive meal and enjoy our efforts with a fine wine. So, for your consideration, the fruits of our labor:

HOMEMADE GNOCCHI WITH VODKA CREAM SAUCE

For the pasta:

  • Kosher salt
  • 3 large russet potatoes
  • 2 cups flour, divided (plus some extra for work surface)
  • 1 large egg, beaten

For the sauce:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup unflavored vodka
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 28-32 oz. crushed peeled tomatoes
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Kosher salt and pepper

To make the pasta:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. On a rimmed baking sheet, pour a medium-sized mound of salt. Pierce potatoes with a fork all over and set them in the salt pile (to pull moisture out and prevent direct contact with baking sheet). Bake in oven for 50 minutes. When done, allow to cool slightly. Slightly flour work surface. Slice each potato in half lengthwise and spoon flesh into a potato ricer. Press through the ricer onto floured surface.

Beat egg with 1/4 teaspoon of salt. When all potatoes are riced, spread out pile and drizzle egg mixture on top. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the flour and work into a dough. In ¼ cup increments, add extra flour to dough. Continue kneading until a poked finger comes out clean. Cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rest for 10 minutes. When done, split dough into six equal portions. Roll out each portion into a ½-inch thick “snake”. Cut dough into 1-inch pieces and place on a tray lined with wax paper. Refrigerate until you need to use it. [Note: you can freeze it for later use, but you have to first freeze them while on the tray, then package into a storage container. Otherwise, they’ll all stick together in the freezer.]

To cook the pasta, start a large pot of salted water boiling. When at a rolling boil, add fresh gnocchi and allow to come back to a boil. Boil until gnocchi starts to float, then taste a piece 30 seconds later. Pasta should be slightly spongy and dumpling-like, but not eggy. If not to taste, test every 30 seconds until desired doneness.

Pasta makes 3 servings (so make a double batch for the below sauce).

To make the sauce:

In a sauce pan, heat olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic and shallots and sauté for 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add vodka. Reduce by half, about 3 minutes. Add chicken stock and tomatoes. Bring to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes, seasoning with salt or pepper to taste. Just before serving, whisk in heavy cream. Bring to a bubble to warm through. Serve over pasta.

Sauce makes 4-6 servings.

Enjoy!

Recipe credits: Food Network

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About Gerard

Fun-loving, well-read foodie.
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