Thursday, November 8, 2007

Pan Fried Gnocchi = True Love

Warning: there are a lot of superlatives in this post. And I never use one more than needed.

About once a year, my in-laws come to visit for a few days. One of the benefits is that they are really good cooks. The first time they visited, my father-in-law started to make gnocchi, which I learned is a family necessity. When he got into my kitchen and saw my spice cabinet and the stand mixer, he made a list of things to make. Huge meatballs, an incredible vodka sauce, pepper biscuits, meaty tomato sauce, biscotti...I felt like I was in a restaurant. Except I had to wash the dishes.

When they make gnocchi, they make a ton. And I mean a TON. I didn't realize where they had all gone, until I looked in my freezer after they left. There was a huge bag of them, ready for us to gorge ourselves on whenever we felt the urge. Which, to be frank, was very soon.

These are not made of potato; it's pretty much flour, ricotta and egg. Simplicity that shines.

So, I have a few left in my freezer. Just enough for The Professor and I for dinner. I've seen a few recipes around for pan fried gnocchi. I have some butter and a hunk of Parmesan that needs to be used.

It's like fate walked into my kitchen and made dinner for me.
But I still had to do the dishes.

I'm not going to do the step-by-step on the gnocchi process; you'll have to get them on your own.
In fact, I have no clue how much of anything I used. I'm not going to be much help for the recipe. But that's because my brain is still busy thinking of the buttery taste left in my mouth.

Pan Fried Gnocchi

In a skillet, melt about 3 or 4 tablespoons of butter. Take about 40-45 {frozen} gnocchi (these are pretty small) and add them to the skillet, making sure they're as separated as possible. Otherwise as they start to get soft, they'll become more of a gnocchi pancake. Which will still be yummy, but not what I was going for. Tonight, anyway.

Now, the hard part - don't start messing with the pretty little suckers! Let them get all soaked in butter, let them sing to the gods of dairy. You can't see it, but they are busy. Busy getting themselves all crispy and ready. Because they know what's coming.

After about 5 or 6 minutes, their little bottoms are going to be turning a luscious golden brown. Grab a clove or two of garlic, and mince it and sprinkle it all over the pan. Now you can start flipping them over. I ended up just pulling out my tongs, because the spatula gave me fits. After I flipped them, I cut up a couple more tablespoons of butter and dropped it around the pan.

Now, to keep myself from popping a couple of under-fried pieces of yumminess in my mouth, I got busy grating a few tablespoons of Parmesan. By the time I was done, my pieces of goodness were ready. I slid them on my plate, sprinkled the Parmesan. And sat down to one of the best simple dinners I've had in a while.


anaj said...

Hey. Can I borrow some gnocchi?

anaj said...

Oh, and by the way, based on the way I can't stop staring, I think that picture could be classified as pasta porn.

Deborah said...

Come on over. :)

kittie said...

mmmmmm... these look stunning...
... mouth watering!

The only time I've tried to make gnocchi at home you could have used them as paperweights. Or bullets...
But this has tempted me into having another go :)

Bryon said...

My wife made gnocchi a couple weeks ago. Tonite's dinner: pan fried gnocchi as you describe, bbq rib eye steak and ceasar salad with homemade croutons.
I'm looking forward to dinner. Mouth is watering.