Gnocchi & tiramisu

My husband Kevin and I love this little Italian place in Charleston called Al Di La. They serve Northern Italian cuisine, with one of their most popular dishes being their Ricotta Gnocchi. It is made from scratch, in house daily. I order this dish every time along with a nice glass of wine and their caprese salad (which is also made with fresh, house made mozzarella). These little gnocchi are like small “pillows”. Oh my, they melt in your mouth; you don’t even need to chew. It is like heaven…with a nice glass of wine and the candles flickering about the restaurant…and the soft music…so relaxing and romantic. Ah, I am drooling on my keyboard. Ok, enough of that…back to reality!

Ok, back to the gnocchi here. No matter where we go out to eat or what kind of cuisine, I always try to replicate what I ate right down to the bread. This ricotta gnocchi has been on my to-do list. The only difference between the recipe here and Al Di La’s is that their gnocchi comes in these little “pillow” like shapes. That is exactly what I did with this recipe to. Instead of shaping them like stated below, I made my ropes a little thicker and cut them into cute little “pillows”.

Do you know what the best ending is to a meal of ricotta gnocchi? That would be tiramisu. Ah, the tiramisu at Al Di La is phenomenal! It is seriously so light that even if you don’t think you can fit dessert, you can. Tiramisu and a nice espresso. I have no idea what they put in this tiramisu but it is ecstasy! Light and fluffy, yet creamy and dense at the same time. It is a hazelnut tiramisu…not strong hazelnut flavor IN the tiramisu but crushed hazelnuts on top. Holy cow is it good, but I have no recipe of it to share with you here today. One day I will, but not today. Today I give you some great ricotta gnocchi.

ricotta-gnocchi-dinner

Ricotta Gnocchi-

Serves 4- adapted with changes from Gourmet and Joelen’s Culinary Adventures

Ingredients

1 cup part- skim ricotta

1 large egg, lightly beaten

¾ c. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus additional for garnish

¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg

½ c. plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Salt, to taste

Pepper, to taste

Butter, as needed

Method

Stir together ricotta, eggs, cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Add flour, stirring to form soft, wet dough.

Shape dough on a well-floured surface with lightly floured hands into 1” thick ropes. Cut crosswise into 1” pieces with a lightly floured knife. Put in 1 layer on lightly floured parchment paper.

Bring a pasta pot of water to a boil. Salt the water. Add gnocchi to boiling water in batches. You don’t want to overcrowd your pot. Stir occasionally to help gnocchi from sticking to the bottom.

Gnocchi is done when they float to the top. (You can also check to make sure that all of the “flour taste” is cooked out by removing one, cutting it in half and tasting it. Remove gnocchi with a slotted spoon onto a clean sheet pan lined with parchment paper.

Once all gnocchi has been boiled and cooked you can now either top them with sauce or sauté them in butter to add a nice crispy, yet tender texture to the outside of your gnocchi.

Garnish with additional Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

We served ours with sliced Filet Mignon & roasted asparagus.

Source: Gourmet

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