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Ricotta Gnocchi alla Vodka with Stracchino & Basil

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Serving Size: 2-4 servings


Ingredients:


Ricotta Gnocchi:

  • 16 oz. whole milk ricotta, strained

  • 1/2 cup ‘00’ flour

  • 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, finely grated

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Vodka Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 shallot, finely chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves, minced

  • 6 oz. tomato paste

  • 1/2 tsp. salt

  • 1/4 cup vodka

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

  • 1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, finely grated

  • 4 oz. stracchino or other soft cheese (whipped ricotta, stracciatella, burrata)

  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish

Directions:


Ricotta Gnocchi:

  1. To strain the ricotta, wrap the cheese with a cheese cloth and place over a mesh strainer set on top of a bowl to catch the excess liquids. Strain for 30 minutes and then squeeze out all excess liquids.

  2. In a mixing bowl, add the strained ricotta, egg yolks, flour, Parmigiano and salt. Use a spatula to mix until all ingredients are combined.

  3. Divide the dough into 4-5 sections and roll out each section into long ropes (about 3/4 in. wide). If the dough is sticky, sprinkle some more flour on top as you roll it out. Cut the ropes into tiny pillows with a bench scraper to form the gnocchi.

Ricotta Gnocchi alla Vodka:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over low heat and sauté the chopped shallot until soft and translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and sauté for a further 1-2 minutes until fragrant.

  3. Add the tomato paste and salt to the pan. Stir and let sit on medium-low heat for 2-3 minutes until the tomato paste deepens in color.

  4. Add 1/4 cup of vodka to deglaze the pan. Stir until the vodka has fully evaporated, about 1-2 minutes.

  5. Remove from heat and stir in the heavy cream and Parmigiano. Add more salt to taste.

  6. Once the water is boiling, add plenty of salt. Cook the gnocchi until they float to the top, about 2-3 minutes. Reserve 3/4 cup of pasta water.

  7. Strain the gnocchi and add them to the pan along with the vodka sauce and 1/4 cup pasta water. Toss on medium heat until the gnocchi is fully coated in the sauce. Add more pasta water as needed, 1/4 cup at a time.

  8. Plate and top with stracchino and basil.

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