Saturday, August 28, 2010

Day 194- Return of the Gnocchi

So I actually had to *cook* something yesterday. It started out not-so-good with the magic lazy flour-nuggets. I pressed them into three "steaks" which was kinda weird, and nommed them, which was both good and unhealthy.

Then around noon I started getting the "you fool, you *need* caffeine!" headache, so I made some tea. The sweetened coconut milk still passed both sniff and taste-tests, so I used that. I'm still out of sugar, after all. I ended up making 2 cups of tea with sweetened coconut milk, and the second (extra milky) one was better.

No money for caffeine makes j. sad.

Anyway... around 4 I was super hungry again, and the roommates had just returned from their semi-regular shop-o-rama. It was a bad time to be in the kitchen, 'cause RM#1 had a digiorno pizza. Not really my usual style (I was raised on not just NY-style pie, but actual pizza *in* NY) but the cheesey melty-ness as it cooked was yummy smelling.

So to combat my urge to knock the RM out and steal his pizza, I made more sweet potato gnocchi. I used up all the almonds, though, so no creamy sauce. I figured out why most people don't use almonds for creamy sauces, too- when you cook them, they get *really* almondy. That's not something that works well in a savoury dish. So most people use something that stays pretty bland when they're doing a (vegan, nut based) cream sauce- something like cashews.

Anyway. I made the gnocchi, it wasn't bad, but it wouldn't have held up to boiling, either. I only used about half a cup of flour, and with as wet as my sweet potato was, it'd probably have taken at least a full cup to hold together for boiling. And a lengthy chilling period.

So I just fried them, instead. In oil, with onions and salt. Quite yummy. I bet you could make them with carrot, too, if you had a ricer. That would probably be super yum- something like a selection... carrot, sweet potato, normal potato, and something like beet? That sounds like it could be good, right? Maybe sautéed in some butter (or not-butter) or something, with a side of Brussels sprouts? And roasted chicken or left-over turkey for you meat-eating types.

I think the best part of gnocchi, though (other than the bit where it tastes really good) is that it's cheap to make yourself. For the price of a package from the store, you can make *pounds* of the stuff at home. Sure, it takes an hour or so of hands-on time, but the time it takes doesn't go up much when you make a bigger batch. And they freeze really well. If you get the potatoes (or other stuff) on sale, you could stuff the freezer with enough gnocchi to give away all year long for $3.

Not bad, right? And it's yummy, too.


  1. Oh boy I love my home-made gnocchi, and I've got tons of it in the freezer. It has also put me into a downward potato spiral. I buy 5 pounds of potatoes, most of them became gnocchi, the rest became oven fries, and now I've just bought another 5 lbs, with NO PLANS FOR THEM. Which means in order to avoid wasting them, they will ALL become oven fries. FIVE POUNDS OF OVEN FRIES.

  2. You know what's even better than oven fries? HOMEFRIES! cut into 1cm-ish squares, fried with spices and onions/ garlic. Served under cheese/ protein/ egg-type thing. Think Denny's skillet breakfast.

    good for at least 1lb worth.

    Also, samosa style smashed potatoes- just some curry and garam masala, fried onions and carrots, some peas or edamame, bit of cream/ milk/ soymilk, and some butter or butter sub. Om nom nom.

  3. Actually, I'm thinking about potato knishes.

  4. I so have to try to make Gnocchi... I've never had it, never seen it done anywhere I've been to, and quite honestly, don't even think I have the equipment to make it, but sounds like such a basic good idea.

  5. TJ- All you need for the gnocchi, equipment-wise, is a spoon, fork, bowl, knife, some place to cut it, and something to cook it in. Add a microwave if you want to cook the potatoes or sweet potatoes faster. Use the spoon to get the potatoes out of their skins and into the bowl, the fork for mashing and mixing (until it's thick or cool enough to work with your hands), and after cutting if you want to go fancy and give them ridges, you use a fork for that, too. Potato ricers and whatnot are just fancy toys that look nice and speed things up a bit.