Make This Fluffy and Colorful Sweet Potato Gnocchi
Looking for a different pasta shape to make with sweet potato? These little sweet potato gnocchi pillows have ridges that capture your favorite tomato-based sauce, and they're fun to make.
One of the tricks to making homemade gnocchi pasta is shaping the dumplings to form a dimple and (ideally) those little ridges. We've tried several methods. Initially Chef Iggy just rolled the dumpling across a cutting board, pressing with his thumb to make the dimple. This works pretty well, but it makes a plain dumpling. No cute little ridges across the back.
Next he tried rolling the dumpling across the back of a fork. This does make ridges, although the fork is sometimes narrower than the dumpling, so it leaves plain edges on the pasta. Forks also don't make as many ridges as traditional gnocchi have. We got to the point where we were making a lot of sweet potato gnocchi. I finally bought an inexpensive gnocchi board like this one.
It's worth it! Although we don't use the board for anything but gnocchi, making the perfect dumplings is a snap. See the video (below) for the technique.
Sweet Potato Gnocchi Pasta
This recipe serves 4 people as a main course.
1 cup sweet potato, cooked and mashed
2 egg yolks
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
Semolina flour for dusting
Using a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment, mix all ingredients together just until the pasta dough begins to come together. Don't overwork the dough, it should be crumbly like pastry dough, but hold together in your hand when you squeeze it.
Form the sweet potato pasta dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator for at least two hours (dough can be made the day before).
Remove pasta dough from refrigerator and let sit at least 20 minutes to warm up. Cut dough into four equal pieces and roll each into a rope, about 14" long.
Working with one rope at a time, cut each into 1/2" pieces. Press and roll each sweet potato gnocchi across a floured gnocchi board or the back of a floured fork to form the ridges.
Toss the sweet potato gnocchi in semolina flour and boil until they float and rise to surface. Spread in a single layer on a foil-lined sheet pan and let cool 10-15 minutes in refrigerator, or longer at room temperature. At this point the gnocchi can be held for several days in the refrigerator, or frozen to use later.
Heat a large skillet or saucepan on medium heat. Add a teaspoon of butter and a teaspoon of olive oil. Sautee the gnocchi until they are brown on each side, tossing occasionally, for about 2-3 minutes. Add a tomato, bolognese or ragu sauce to pan and toss well.
Serve sweet potato gnocchi garnished with ricotta cheese and sprigs of fresh mint or basil.