You remember what a powerhouse sweet potatoes are, right? Here is my favorite recipe that uses them. Sorry, this isn’t a particularly “quick” recipe, but it’s a good one to do with an extra pair of little hands to help with the work and keep you company. Besides, play dough skills are handy with this one. And they freeze great, so I like to make a big batch, freeze them on a cookie sheet so they don’t all stick together, and then bag them and pop them in the freezer for another day when I need something quick–at that point the work is all done.
That said, it is a rather simple recipe, with few ingredients.
Sweet Potato Whole Wheat Gnocchi
1 medium or 2 small sweet potatoes, peeled, cooked and pureed
1 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1/4 tsp salt
To me, it’s easiest to microwave the sweet potatoes. I like using this bag my sister-in-law made for us one Christmas that is specifically for cooking potatoes in the microwave. Then peel and puree them (I use a food processor. You can use a ricer too).
The pureed sweet potato should be warm enough that it’s soft, but not so much that it will cook the egg. (Of course when I was making this particular batch, the potatoes seemed unusually dry and I couldn’t get them to pureé. I added several tablespoons of water until the food processor I was using could cycle them, and it all turned out fine in the end.)
Combine all ingredients into a soft dough.
Do not over mix or the gnocchi can turn out tough. This can also happen if there is too much flour. Your resulting dough should be workable but nice and soft. Since the potato isn’t an exact measurement, you may have to adjust the flour. Don’t worry about it too much; it isn’t an exact science, those are just some tips if you want them. I’ve always been cautious, but I’ve never had them turn out bad.
Get yourself some counter space and someone good with their (clean) hands that wants to spend a little time with you. Flour your surfaces, and take a lump of dough and make a snake with it, about 1/2 inch in diameter. Maybe a little bigger than that.
Cut the snake into pieces about 1 inch long. (I don’t really measure them, I’m just trying to give you an idea.)
Here’s the part that takes a little skill. Take a fork and with a little pressure in your thumb, smash/roll each piece down the tines.
This makes a nice little pattern on the outside of the gnocchi, and makes it so none of the pasta is too thick. They will cook somewhat uniformly and not make you feel like you’re eating lumps of play dough.
This recipe made this many gnocchi. There were five of us eating, and we ran out, but we probably should have stopped eating them anyway. You can cook them right away, or if you made them earlier in the day let them sit a little while until it’s closer to dinner time, or freeze them.
When you are ready to cook the gnocchi (frozen takes a little longer but is the same method) bring a large pot of water to a boil. Put the gnocchi in, and give them just a little stir to make sure they don’t stick together at the bottom. Bring the water back to a boil, and after just a few minutes, they will start floating to the top.
Use a slotted spoon to pick them out as they surface because that is your sign that they are done!
I like them with marinara sauce (one more veggie on the plate) and Parmesan cheese, but anything you like on pasta will probably be delish.
Buen provecho! (I know “Bon Appetit” is probably more appropriate, but I’ve never been to Italy, and I first learned to make these in Uruguay, though with white potatoes and white flour, and where they were usually spelled “ñoquis” or “ñokis”–there’s your trivia tidbit for today.)
And thanks for getting me to nail down the measurements on this recipe as well as get my crew trained. They had a great time rolling snakes and cutting them with a butter knife. Now I can double or triple this next time, throw a gnocchi party with my girls, and have some for freezing.