Thursday, January 28, 2010

Gnudi, or Ravioli With Their Clothes Off

Call them what you like: gnudi, ricotta gnocchi or naked ravioli, I have tried to make these little dumplings many times and have not met with much, if any, success.

However, when I saw Jennifer Hess's recipe for Gnudi (in the issue of Edible Rhody that I picked up this weekend) I felt like I'd give them another try.

Her recipe is now up online here and you can read her post about them (and see her much more attractive picture) here. From her picture, you can also see that my portion size is about twice hers. Jen's recipe says it will feed 4-6, and I think that's appropriate - fill out your meal with vegetables, bread and salad. The gnudi will feel light (like little clouds) and you'll want to keep eating them, but as they are pretty much straight ricotta, they are rather rich.

I have tried to make similar recipes before and failed. The trick is to get your ricotta dry and well-drained. The fresh ricotta I purchased was very dry - even after 3 hours in a strainer, it had only released a tablespoon of liquid. In the past, I used ricotta I made myself and even after a long draining period I never got it dry enough and my gnudi always fell apart. This time, they held together beautifully and each made it to the plate in one piece.

If you look at Jen's picture you'll also see that my breadcrumbs were much larger than hers - that's me being lazy. Grind your breadcrumbs up nice and fine and they'll make for a nice crispy contrast to the gnudi's lightness. I used beet tops as the greens in these gnudi and they worked really well. We ate the beets as a salad course, topped with fennel and white anchovies.


Peter M said...

I made my first ricotta last year and I found them delish and easy to make. Nice dish!

Chow and Chatter said...

oh yummy looks delicious love gnocchi

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