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Pumpkin Ricotta Gnocchi with Crème Fraîche

I’ve blogged so much about my love affair with pumpkin these last couple of months that it might start sounding, well, a bit creepy. But I just couldn’t resist trying just one more recipe that contained my all-time favorite fall fruit. On second thought, I guess it is no creepier than Jenn’s unseemly infatuation with kale! Anyway, this month I’m trying my hand at pumpkin gnocchi.
Gnocchi are small Italian dumplings made with either potatoes or flour. A good gnocchi should be soft and fluffy, not rubbery, and need not be smothered in sauce to be edible. They say the key is not to overwork the dough or use too much flour. Tales of gnocchi disasters abound. Even seasoned chefs claim it takes years to master the proper handling and shaping technique.
Traditionally, gnocchi are shaped with a fork, a gnocchi board, or sometimes a grater and can be a bit time consuming. It takes a little effort to whip up a batch of gnocchi, but fear not, the shaping is totally optional. And really, wouldn’t you go the extra mile for the one you love?

Making Pumpkin Rictotta Gnocchi

Mix 1 cup of pumpkin purée with 1 cup ricotta cheese, 2 egg yolks, 2 teaspoons sea salt, 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg and a pinch of white pepper.
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Gently mix in 1 ½ to 2 cups of unbleached cake or sifted unbleached all-purpose flour just until the dough comes together. It will be very soft and slightly sticky.
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Generously flour a work surface, gently knead the dough together, and divide the dough into six equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ¾-inch thick rope. Cut each rope into ¾-inch long pieces and either shape or simply place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
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To shape, dust the gnocchi with a little flour, then use one finger to push the dumpling up onto the tines of a fork. Let the gnocchi drop back the work surface.

Believe me there is really an art to this. Practice, practice, practice.

Believe me there is really an art to this. Practice, practice, practice.


Store gnocchi in the refrigerator until ready to use or freeze uncovered on the parchment paper until solid, and then transfer to a freezer safe bag and store in the freezer for up to two weeks. Drop frozen gnocchi directly into boiling water.

Preparing the Pumpkin Gnocchi to Serve

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add 1/2 of the gnocchi into the boiling water, and boil until they float and are cooked through, about three minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon. Boil remaining gnocchi. Reserve ½ cup of the water.
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Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until foaming. Add half of the gnocchi and ½ teaspoon rubbed sage and cook, shaking the pan often, until the gnocchi are lightly browned, about three minutes. Remove and set aside. Repeat with another 2 tablespoons of butter and additional sage.
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Reduce the heat to medium low; add ½ cup crème fraîche or sour cream and ½ cup of reserved cooking water. Cook reducing slightly about 3 minutes. Add the browned gnocchi, ¼ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Top with roasted pepitas and serve immediately.
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Pumpkin Ricotta Gnocchi with Crème Fraîche
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup of ricotta cheese
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 2 cups of unbleached flour
  • ½ teaspoon of rubbed sage
  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • ¼ cup finely parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Mix 1 cup of pumpkin purée with 1 cup ricotta cheese, 2 egg yolks, 2 teaspoons sea salt, 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg and a pinch of white pepper.
  2. Gently mix in 1 ½ to 2 cups of unbleached cake or sifted unbleached all-purpose flour just until the dough comes together. It will be very soft and slightly sticky.
  3. Generously flour a work surface, gently knead the dough together, and divide the dough into six equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ¾-inch thick rope. Cut each rope into ¾-inch long pieces and either shape or simply place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. To shape, dust the gnocchi with a little flour, then use one finger to push the dumpling up onto the tines of a fork. Let the gnocchi drop back the work surface.
  5. Store gnocchi in the refrigerator until ready to use or freeze uncovered on the parchment paper until solid, and then transfer to a freezer safe bag and store in the freezer for up to two weeks. Drop frozen gnocchi directly into boiling water.
  6. Preparing the Pumpkin Gnocchi to Serve
  7. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add ½ of the gnocchi into the boiling water, and boil until they float and are cooked through, about three minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon. Boil remaining gnocchi. Reserve ½ cup of the water.
  8. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until foaming. Add half of the gnocchi and ½ teaspoon rubbed sage and cook, shaking the pan often, until the gnocchi are lightly browned, about three minutes. Remove and set aside. Repeat with another 2 tablespoons of butter and additional sage.
  9. Reduce the heat to medium low; add ½ cup crème fraîche or sour cream and ½ cup of reserved cooking water. Cook reducing slightly about 3 minutes. Add the browned gnocchi, ¼ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Top with roasted pepitas and serve immediately.

 
Have you ever tried making gnocchi? What kind? — Karen

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2 Comments
  1. Jenna says:

    I finally made this after having pinned it months ago. I added sherry and mushrooms to the cream sauce, but otherwise, I followed the recipe exactly. And it is AMAZING! It was really not that difficult either, just messy with all the flour. Who knew? I think this would be a great food for company–have all the mess making the gnocchi the night before (or months before if you freeze), then just toss it in the pan that night.

  2. Lisa says:

    This looks really good.