This week’s recipe comes from Pasta Grannies, a gorgeous new cookbook from Hardie Grant that’s brimming with traditional Italian recipes straight from the nonne of Italy. Gnudi means nude and alludes to these dumplings being pasta-less; they are ravioli without their coats.
For the gnudi
- 250 g cow’s milk ricotta, drained weight
- 600g spinach
- 25g finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano (or other parmesan cheese)
- 1 large egg, beaten
- Plain (all-purpose) flour, for rolling and dusting
For the dressing
- 30g unsalted butter
- 5 sage leaves
- Several scrapes of nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano Reggiano
- Place the ricotta in a sieve over a bowl and leave it to drain for an hour or so, then weigh out 250g.
- Meanwhile, place the spinach leaves in a saucepan, turn the heat up to high and add 2 tablespoons of boiling water. Cover the pan with its lid and steam until spinach has collapsed. Drain the spinach through a sieve and leave it to cool. Squeeze out as much water as possible and roughly chop. You should end up with about 300g cooked spinach.
- Mix the spinach with the ricotta, Parmigiano Reggiano and beaten egg. Season to taste and make sure the ingredients are playing nicely together.
- Pour some flour into a bowl. Pinch off 20g pieces of the mixture (about the size of a large walnut) and toss each on in the flour before rolling it between your palms to create a nice little ball. Dust off any excess flour. Place on a lightly floured board, away from each other so they don’t stick.
- Have a frying pan on one side of your stove, and a sauté pan on the other. Melt the butter in the frying pan with the sage and nutmeg and keep it warm while you cook the gnudi.
- Fill a sauté pan with salted water and bring to a gentle simmer. Lower the gnudi gently into the pan and let them tremble in the water for 5 minutes, or until they bob to the surface.
- Use a slotted spoon to transfer them to the butter in the frying pan. You may have to cook the gnudi in batches.
- Spoon the butter over the gnudi, then serve them with a shower of grated cheese over the top.
Pasta Grannies, $39.99, is published by Hardie Grant, and is available now at all good book stores.