I am 100% Italian. At least, that is what I tell people when they ask. Technically, I am first generation “American” since I was born here in the United States (many, many years ago). Both of my parents were born in Italy. My mom’s family immigrated here in the 1950’s when she was only 13 years old. My father, on the other hand, didn’t move here until after he met my mother while she was vacationing in Italy. At this point, they were both in their mid- to late 20’s. As the story goes, he proposed to her two or three times during her trip before she accepted.
When they were children, growing up in Italy, everything was made from scratch. My mom is an excellent cook. I learned most of what I know from her. I do alter some of the recipes to suit my taste. However, one thing we definitely have in common is how we “wing it” when we cook. The only time we measure anything is when we bake.
My oldest son is 8 years old. He has been asking my mom to teach him to cook for a while now. She decided teaching him to make gnocchi from scratch would be a perfect first meal.
- 8 medium size potatoes
- 6-8 cups all purpose flour (you probably won’t use all of it).
- Salt, to taste
- Boil the potatoes until “fork tender”. Make sure the water completely covers the potatoes and is at least one inch above them.
- Peel and mash the potatoes.
- Place them on a board until cool enough to handle.
- Add flour until a dough is formed. Consistency: not sticky and not hard.
- Make ropes from the dough.
- Cut in bite-size pieces and sprinkle a little flour over them.
- Use a fork or “gnocchi board” and roll to make the ridges on the gnocchi.
- Place the gnocchi on a cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper, until the second pot of water begins to boil.
- Add salt to boiling water before the gnocchi.
- Gnocchi are ready when they float to the top.
- Drain in a colander.
- Serve with your favorite sauce and enjoy!
- Bonus picture…my father decided to join in the fun
By the way, the Italian sausage in the first photo was also made from scratch. That recipe will be shared in a future post.
What is your favorite recipe to make from scratch?