Making Gnocchi with Tomato Sauce
is a way of using up ingredients if you have (for example) followed my recipe for Stuffed Tomatoes
and then used the inside of the tomatoes to make a Fresh Tomato Sauce
, because you can use that sauce with your gnocchi.
If not, don't fear, this recipe includes instructions for making a simple but tasty tomato sauce from canned tomatoes.
How to make Basil Gnocchi with Tomato Sauce:
Begin by making the sauce. Place the chopped tomatoes in a pan, then half fill the can with water and add that to the pan. Peel and finely chop the shallot and the garlic. Stir in the shallot, garlic, rosemary (or thyme) and salt and freshly-ground black pepper. Bring to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer gently for at least
one hour until it has thickened and is coloured dark red.
Meanwhile, to make the gnocchi, be sure to use waxy potatoes (like Charlotte or Maris Peer) if possible. Waxy potatoes are translucent and feel moist and pasty. They are good at staying firm and keeping their shape so they make great salad potatoes. Floury potatoes (like Estima, King Edward, Maris Piper, Desiree) are brighter and more granular in appearance with a drier feel. They're better for dishes where you want fluffy potatoes or for mash.
Peel the potatoes and make Mashed Potatoes
according to the recipe. Important: be sure to mash them well because lumps will be noticeable in the gnocchi, so mash the potatoes thoroughly to as smooth a texture as possible.
Finely chop the basil leaves then sprinkle them over the potatoes. Add plenty of salt and freshly-ground pepper, then add the flour. Using a wooden spoon or your hands, bring the mixture together to make a firm dough.
Using your hands (and knuckles) knead the dough gently for a couple of minutes then, on a flat surface, roll it out into sausage shapes about ½" (1cm) thick. Cut the
gnocchi 'sausages' into 1" (2.5cm) lengths.
Gently cook the gnocchi in a pan of simmering water for between one and two minutes until they rise to the surface, then scoop them out as they rise. Toss into the finished tomato sauce and serve straight away with crisp rocket leaves.