- 3 pounds russet potatoes
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 egg, extra large
- 1 pinch salt
- 1/2 cup canola oil
Boil the whole potatoes until they are soft (about 45 minutes). While still warm, peel and pass through vegetable mill onto clean pasta board.
Set 6 quarts of water to boil in a large spaghetti pot. Set up ice bath with 6 cups ice and 6 cups water near boiling water.
Make well in center of potatoes and sprinkle all over with flour, using all the flour. Place egg and salt in center of well and using a fork, stir into flour and potatoes, just like making normal pasta. Once egg is mixed in, bring dough together, kneading gently until a ball is formed. Knead gently another 4 minutes until ball is dry to touch.
Roll baseball-sized ball of dough into 3/4-inch diameter dowels and cut dowels into 1-inch long pieces. Flick pieces off of fork or concave side of cheese grater until dowel is finished. Drop these pieces into boiling water and cook until they float (about 1 minute). Meanwhile, continue with remaining dough, forming dowels, cutting into 1-inch pieces and flicking off of fork. As gnocchi float to top of boiling water, remove them to ice bath.
Continue until all have been cooled off. Let sit several minutes in bath and drain from ice and water. Toss with 1/2 cup canola oil and store covered in refrigerator up to 48 hours until ready to serve.
Gnocchi is the Italian name for a variety of thick, soft noodle or dumpling. They may be made from semolina, ordinary wheat flour, potato, bread crumbs, or similar ingredients. The smaller forms are called gnocchetti.
The word gnocchi means "lumps", and may derive from nocchio, a knot in the wood,or from nocca (knuckle). It has been a traditional Italian pasta type of probably Middle Eastern origin since Roman times. It was introduced by the Roman Legions during the enormous expansion of the empire into the countries of the European continent. In the past 2000 years each country developed its own specific type of small dumplings, with the ancient Gnocchi as their common ancestor. In Roman times, gnocchi were made from a semolina porridge-like dough mixed with eggs, and are still found in similar forms today, particularly in Sardinia (where they do not contain egg, however, and are known as malloreddus). One variety, gnocchi di pane (literally bread noodles), is made from bread crumbs and is popular in Friuli and Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol. Another variety from Trentino-Alto Adige/Sudtirol is spinach gnocchi, called strangolapreti. This translates to "choke the priest." The use of potato is a relatively recent innovation, occurring after the introduction of the potato to Europe in the 16th century.