November 03, 2007

Happy Birthday, G!

Baby G celebrates his first birthday today.

Rather than a bunch of toys and clothing he will outgrow in a couple of months, his parents have asked each of the party guests to contribute some article to a time capsule, which he'll open on his 18th birthday. Ideas included a photograph, a piece of advice, a piece of "today" that will some day be history.

My contribution?

After much thought, I'm contributing a piece of my past hoping it might be a small piece of his future. My father's mother's recipe for gnocchi. Served alongside the turkey at every Thanksgiving feast, the roast beast at Christmas, the ham at Easter. Simple but soul satisfying potato pasta, made by hand, with love.

Gnocchi (8 servings)

6 medium potatoes cooked and riced
1/2 cup grated Parmegiano-Regiano
4 egg yolks
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of nutmeg
1 cup flour (give or take)

Peel and rice potatoes while still hot. Mix all ingredients except the flour. then add in as much flour as needed to make a dough that will roll. Mix well, then roll on a floured board into a rope about 1/2 inch thick. Cut into 1-inch pieces. Then take each piece of dough and roll it over the tines of a fork, mashing a slight indentation with your thumb as you start to roll the pieces. Each piece should have a shell-like impression from the fork tines.

Drop formed gnocchi into rapidly boiling salted water (1 teaspoon salt per quart) and cook for about 5-6 minutes. Gnocchi will float to the surface when cooked. Remove from water with strainer and place on serving dish. Top with browned butter and cheese, or rich meat sauce.

The recipe for rich meat sauce?

He'll get that on his second birthday...

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Deborah said...

What a great idea for a gift! And the gnocchi recipe sounds like the perfect addition.