Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Sweet Potato Gnocchi for Real
Finally the promised Sweet Potato Gnocchi is delivered to our tabletop drenched in sage browned butter and topped with toasted pecans. Fresh from the freezer, the gnocchi minutes to cook and still ended up feather light as the recipe promised. I have to admit, I was relieved. After years of terrible, store-bought gnocchi, I'd finally worked up the nerve to make it myself just a few years ago. But nerve is only a small part of successful gnocchi, I found. The second, and perhaps more important part, is a great recipe.
Gourmet's Sweet Potato Gnocchi recipe is lovely, even in color. Let's not discuss how my shapes are never quite right or even alike in nature, as I've never claimed to be a professional that way. Instead, we'll focus on the concentrated, nutty flavors working together — browned butter and pecans! sweet potato and parmesan! — inside soft little pasta pillows the color of autumn oak leaves. One bite and I was hooked. The very best part of all is that I only used half of my frozen stash, meaning I'll reap a second meal from one evening's hard work!
Changes? Substitutions? Yes and yes. You'll notice I used pecans instead of chestnuts, but that's merely for availability. And, no, I didn't fry my sage leaves, just browned them in the butter. But my major change was using only sweet potatoes in this recipe, rather than adding a russet. I'm sure to have sacrified a bit of fluffiness, but the vibrant colors and flavor of pure sweet potato more than made up for it.