This is a dish I started making a while back. It is quick and easy to prepare and is low in fat and carbohydrates. Assuming of course you are not going to drown it in some creamy sauce.
Here I am teaming it with some asparagus, chilli and salmon. The trick with this recipe is to have light hands. The gnocchi is very delicate and if your hands are made of concrete you will end up with a mushy mess. I worked with a waitress once whom we nicknamed ‘concrete hands’ for all the dishes she broke, she could not have made this recipe.
Fresh ricotta gives the best results but if you are not sure a 250gm tub works well. I had a disaster with some ricotta I bought from a supermarket deli. It had quite a rubbery texture which translated into very chewy gnocchi so be careful.
The amount of flour to use can vary. I add it a spoon at a time till I get a fairly wet consistency but one that will clump together. Be very gentle here you do not want to activate the gluten in the flour too much or your gnocchi will only be good for ammunition, against what, or who I’ll leave that up to you.
Mix the egg yolk and lemon rind into the ricotta. Add the flour one spoon at a time until right consistency is achieved (see picture).
Grab a hand full with floured hands and put onto well-floured board. With light touches roll into a log about 1.5cm in thickness.
Now cut the log into 2cm lengths with a floured knife. As you cut flick the piece of gnocchi away. Set the gnocchi onto a floured piece of baking paper until you are ready to use it. Get a large pot of water boiling and add a good pinch of salt.
The Salmon, Chilli and Asparagus
In a pan gently steam your salmon in a little white wine with the lid on. In a separate pan sauté your finely sliced chilli and asparagus spears in a little olive oil. When the salmon is still rear take out, reserving the wine left in the pan. Break the salmon into chunks. Add your cooked asparagus and chilli to the pan with the wine.
Now add your gnocchi to the boiling water, as it floats to the surface scoop out and into the pan with the asparagus and chilli. When all the gnocchi is done add the salmon, grated pecorino, a good grind of pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Mix through carefully and dish out.
Now it is ready to enjoy. This recipe also works fabulously with a rich, homemade tomato sauce. Give it a go it’s easy and delicious and will become another great dish you can add to your repertoire.