Lemon gnocchi is one of our family’s favorite for Easter.
“I like to use a potato ricer to make the gnocchi, but you can grate the potatoes on a box cheese grater, if you don’t have one.”
Serves 2-3 people as a main, 6 as a side dish.
- 1 lb, 12 ounces potatoes (approximately – don’t obsess too much on this) Russet potatoes work well
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 3 lemons, zested – save some of the juice and a little zest
- 1.5 cups flour (approximately)
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Parmesan or Romano cheese, for grating (optional)
Bake the potatoes for about an hour at 400 degrees F. or until they are soft. After they cool a bit and you can handle them, peel them while they are still a bit warm. Put the potatoes through a potato ricer (or grate them) into a mound on the counter. Make a well in the center and break two eggs into the well. Add the lemon zest to the eggs and beat them with a fork a little bit. Slowly incorporate the potatoes into the eggs and start adding some of the flour. A pastry scraper helps a lot with this. Work the flour in until a nice dough forms. Don’t overwork the dough. Add just enough flour so the dough is not too dry. You want the dough to be slightly sticky. Pinch off some of the dough and roll into a long thin log. Cut the log into 1 inch pieces and gently roll each piece off the tine of a fork to create wedges. The smaller the pieces, the easier they are to handle.
(We set the gnocchi out on a cloth as we make them.) If you are not going to cook them in the next 20 minutes or so, place on a tray, covered loosely with wax paper and refrigerate until it is time for them to be cooked.
Bring a large pot of water to boil, add salt and slowly add the gnocchi. Reduce the heat so that the water is not boiling too rapidly and stir gently. Gnocchi is fragile. As they rise to the top, sample one to make sure it’s done. When they are done to your likeness, remove from the pot with a large slotted spoon and gently add to the dish you will serve from.
In a small pan, heat the olive oil and butter and some lemon juice until the butter is slightly brown. Stir in the lemon zest, then pour over the gnocchi and toss gently. Serve at once. Pass the cheese.
I like to use a potato ricer to make the gnocchi, but you can grate the potatoes on a box cheese grater, if you don’t have one. This is a little more tedious because the potatoes tend to crumble unless you grate slowly.
Garnish with fresh basil. If you want, you can zest more lemon on top also and/or add some grated cheese.
Enjoy and wishing you and your family a beautiful Easter celebration!