Gnocchi di Ricotta

These melt in your mouth ricotta gnocchi were a staple at my father’s restaurant and I never really saw them on the menus of other Italian places back in those days. Potato gnocchi seemed to be much more prevalent. Today, I see them in restaurants much more often and they are always hard to resist.

Serves 6

3 1/4 cups of flour
2 eggs
1.5 pound of ricotta cheese, well drained
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese plus extra for sprinkling
pinch of salt & pepper
1 teaspoon of olive oil
4 cups marinara sauce

  1. Place 3 cups of the flour in a large bowl. Lightly beat the egs with a fork then add them to the flour along with the ricotta, 1/2 cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano, salt and pepper. Mix ingredients together with your hands to form a dough.
  2. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured working surface and knead lightly for 2 to 3 more minutes, gradually adding remaining flour if the dough sticks to the board or your hands. The dough is ready when it no longer sticks but is still somewhat tacky to the touch and soft.
  3. Divide the dough into four pieces and roll into balls. Using both hands, roll out each ball of dough into a log about the width of your index finger. Cut each log into 1/2 inch pieces.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  5. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a teaspoon of olive oil oil and the gnocchi.
  6. Cook, uncovered over high heat until the gnocchi rise to the surface of the water, about 2 to 3 minutes. While the gnocchi are cooking heat the marinara in a large saute pan over medium heat.
  7. Remove the gnocchi from the water with a slotted spoon and transfer to the saute pan with the marinara sauce.
  8. Toss gnocchi in sauce until coated, then transfer to a caserole dish sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to taste. Bake in oven for 10 minutes and serve.