Day three – an attempt at gnocchi

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Yesterday’s painting session was such great fun, I think I might just give drawing a try after all. Don’t worry, not quite yet. Rather, we’ll be heading to the kitchen today. 

Ever since I was given “Cook with Jamie” (http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/cook-with-jamie-jamie-oliver/1102811274?ean=9781401322335) quite a few years ago, I’ve been meaning to try making my own gnocchi. Usually, I’d dismiss the idea, telling myself that I’m way too busy and that the ready-made stuff from the supermarket tastes absolutely great. This is why I love my challenge – today I’m actually going to give the home-made version a go.

I combined some ideas from Jamie’s recipe with a recipe from an Italian cookbook and came up with this in the end (should serve three to four people depending on your appetite):

* 1 kg of potatoes

* about 250g fine flour

* 1 teaspoon of salt

* a hint of nutmeg

Peel the potatoes and cook them in lightly salted water until soft. Mash them up, adding the salt and nutmeg. Add the flour bit by bit until the dough stops sticking to your hands. Form rolls out of the dough, cut off pieces of about 2cm length, roll them into oval shapes and press a wet fork into each of them to make the characteristic stripey pattern. Place them in boiling water, reduce the temperature and boil for about four minutes. They’re done when they’re swimming on the top.

I served mine with a pumpkin sauce, but any rich vegetable or meat sauce will work nicely. The potatoes give the dish quite a sweet flavour so a spicy or salty sauce is best.

Unfortunately, I have to say the gnocchi were way too sticky and soft. However, both recipes I used said that the amount of flour used depends on the potatoes and that it takes some practice to get it right. Guess I’ll have to keep trying to get the consistency right. That will probably make it easier to shape them and less messy too. I spent quite a while fighting with the sticky dough. The flavour was lovely though, definitely better than that of ready-made ones.

Well then, I’ve made g-new-cchi (excuse the painful pun) today, even if they were far from perfect. The challenge is about trying new things, failure is allowed. So day three has been a success! I’m sure that keeping my new year’s resolution for three days means I’ve already done better than ever before. 

Now I’m looking forward to tomorrow, I’ve got a pretty fun thing planned.

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