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Amy James

Vacation Cooking: Marinara Sauce and Gnocchi

 
Vacation Cooking: Marinara Sauce and Gnocchi

 

 

 

My friend (and neighbor), Alyssa and I did some serious cooking while on vacation.  We both have gardens and a TON of ripe tomatoes- it was time to use those bad boys.  If you're going to make some homemade marinara sauce- you might as well make some hand-rolled gnocchi to go with it.  Here are the recipes for both dishes...

 

Gnocchi

1 potato per person (old, starchy is best!)

flour – around 300 grams per potato, or half the volume of the potatoes once cooked

¼ tsp nutmeg per potato

¼ tsp salt per potato

 

Boil potatoes with the skin on for 30 minutes until very well done.

 

Remove the skin while potato is hot, and rice potatoes. (If you don’t have a ricer, use a couple of forks but make sure the potato is well broken apart.) Dust work surface and hands with flour. Add salt/nutmeg to flour mixture. Knead flour mixture into potato, working until consistency is smooth and dough does not stick to the surface. (Do this while the potato is still hot!)

 

On a floured surface, form dough into long, skinny rolls and cut into ½ inch slices. Roll in more flour to avoid sticking.  (At this point, you can roll the slices on a fork or gnocchi board to get the traditional ridges, or you can leave them as-is. You can also freeze them in this state, or cook immediately)

  

 

 

Drop gnocchi into boiling salted water. Boil for 2-10 min (depending on size and shape) keep cooking even after gnocchi start to float. Add 2 TBSP butter to the bottom of serving dish, add gnocchi and sauce, toss gently and top with grated parmesan. 

 

 

Marinara Sauce

 

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 small onions, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 stalks celery, finely chopped

2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped

½ tsp salt

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

2 (32-oz) cans crushed tomatoes

2 dried bay leaves

1 TBSP fresh basil, chopped

1 tsp fresh parsley, chopped

1 tsp fresh oregano, chopped

 

In a large casserole pot, heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes.  Add the celery, carrots, and ½ tsp each of salt and pepper. Sauté until all the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and bay leaves, and simmer uncovered over low heat until the sauce thickens, about 1 hour. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Season the sauce with more salt and pepper, to taste. (The sauce can be made one day ahead. Cool, then cover and refrigerate.)

 

THE FINISHED PRODUCT...

 

 

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