Pumpkin gnocchi is a very tasty first course. An easy recipe, which is prepared with few ingredients and wants a dough preferably without potatoes. Taste freshly cooked pumpkin gnocchi, accompanied by a delicate dressing with butter and sage.
First of all, to get good, soft and compact pumpkin gnocchi, it’s important to cook the pumpkin in the oven so as to make the pulp drier and improve the characteristics of the dough. A possible variant is to add to the dough a boiled and crushed potato that, thanks to its starch, allows the pumpkin to thicken better, making it easier to shape the gnocchi.
Rich in nutrients, including mineral salts and vitamins, pumpkin is a typically autumnal vegetable that is harvested and used in the kitchen when it’s completely ripe and the pulp is sweeter. This vegetable is excellent for preparing pumpkin soup, pasta dishes, such as pumpkin ravioli, or a semifreddo.
Season the pumpkin gnocchi with a light sauce, not to alter the taste. Perfect if flavored with butter, sage and Parmesan cheese. In addition to the classic potato gnocchi, you can try other easy and fast gnocchi recipes, such as gnocchi with arugula and gorgonzola sauce.
Pumpkin Gnocchi Step by Step Recipe
- 600 g (about 1,3 lbs) of cooked pumpkin pulp (that is 1 pumpkin of about 1,3 kg or 2,8 lbs)
- 300 g ( about 10 oz) of all-purpose flour
- 1 medium egg
- black pepper
- a pinch of nutmeg
Tip: make pumpkin gnocchi the day before and freeze them. How? Keep reading, we’ll explain it at the end of this recipe
Begin by preparing the pumpkin. Take the pumpkin and make some thick slices; remove the seeds and filaments. Then remove the skin. Finally cut it into thin slices. Now the pumpkin is ready to be cooked.
Place the pumpkin slices on a baking sheet pan covered with baking paper. Cook in a static oven preheated to 200°C (390F) for 15-20 minutes or in a ventilated oven at 180°C (350F) for 10-15 minutes, until they start to slightly dry. This way the pumpkin will dry out and will not release the water during the preparation of the gnocchi.
After the necessary time, turn off the oven and take out the pumpkin. At this point, if you wish, you can add a boiled medium potato. Why you ask? Because sometimes the pumpkin is too rich in water and, if it were the case, it would be very difficult to make the gnocchi. A boiled potato is necessary to make the dough thicker. Now Work the ingredients still warm to avoid dispersing the starches and make the mixture sticky and difficult to work. Place the flour on a work surface (try this non-slip silicone mat that sticks to the table) and, using your hands or a spoon, create the classic fountain shape. Crush the pumpkin still warm with a potato ricer directly on the flour. Adjust with salt and pepper and flavor with a pinch of nutmeg.
Work the dough quickly with a fork or with a stainless steel scraper, then beat the egg in a bowl. Give the mixture the fountain shape and make a well in the center then pour the beaten egg. Incorporate the egg to the dough with a fork and work it until it’s homogeneous. Work the dough as little as possible and quickly. Give it the shape of a loaf.
Now you can start making gnocchi. Cut a piece of dough and place it on the floured surface. Then with your hand make a long roll of dough as thick as a finger. Slice the roll every 1,5/2 cm (about half inch), so as to obtain small cylinders. Proceed to make pumpkin gnocchi until all the dough is finished. Now slide the gnocchi one by one on the prongs of a fork or on a gnocchi board to give them the classic striped pattern on the surface. As you prepare them, place them on a floured cloth. Be careful: keep the gnocchi well spaced, otherwise they will tend to stick to each other. Your pumpkin gnocchi are now ready to be cooked but first…freeze them! Yes, it’s better if you freeze them. It’s a little trick. This way you can make pumpkin gnocchi even some days in advance and, when you want to eat them, you have just to take the gnocchi directly from the freezer and, without defrosting, cook them.
How to store pumpkin gnocchi
Here’s how to store pumpkin gnocchi: place them, well spaced, on floured trays (wood, plastic or cardboard). Place the trays with gnocchi into the freezer. Wait for 2/3 hours then transfer them in food plastic bags and put them back into the freezer. Do not put freshly made still soft gnocchi in plastic bags, otherwise they will stick to each other! Cook gnocchi still frozen in boiling water, directly from the freezer to the pan. This way they will retain the softness and texture of homemade pumpkin gnocchi.
How to cook pumpkin gnocchi
First thing first make the sauce for the gnocchi: so melt the butter with the sage in a saucepan. Then cook the pumpkin gnocchi a little at a time in plenty of salted boiling water. Be careful because they cook in a few minutes. As soon as they rise to the surface, take them with a skimmer slotted spoon, drain them well and place them in a serving dish. Add butter and sage seasoning, a little grated Parmesan cheese, stir and serve immediately.