Classic Potato Gnocchi with Roasted Cherry Tomato Sauce

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This is an easy gnocchi recipe that once you master, can be something quick and impressive to cook for family and friends. Its delicious pan fried in sage and garlic butter, tossed with pesto or with this simple cherry tomato sauce. 


Ingredients
 

For the gnocchi:

500g starchy potatoes 

1 scant cup plain flour

1 organic egg

1 sea salt flakes and ground pepper

pinch of nutmeg

 

For the sauce:

400g cherry tomatoes

1 400g tin chopped tomatoes 

1/4 cup olive oil

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

3 anchovy fillets (omit these for vegetarian option)

1/2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes

1 teaspoon salt flakes

freshly ground pepper

2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon brown sugar 

METHOD
 

  1. Place the potatoes, whole and skin on in a pot with salted water. Bring to the boil and cook until the potatoes are tender. While the potatoes are cooking, heat your oven to 180C, toss the tomatoes in a tablespoon of the olive oil and place in a baking dish. Roast for 20 minutes until they have collapsed and are slightly caramelised.
     
  2. Drain the potatoes and allow to stand for a few minutes to cool. Once you can handle them, peel the skins off and place in a large mixing bowl. Mash until really smooth or for the best results pop them into a potato ricer. Add to the bowl, the egg, flour, a generous pinch of salt, ground pepper and nutmeg. Combine the mixture with floured hands until a smooth dough has formed, be careful not to overwork here as the dough will become too dense and rubbery.
     
  3. Cut the dough in half and roll each half into long cigars on a floured bench. Cut into 2cm little pillows and place on a floured tray until you're ready to cook them.
     
  4. To continue with the sauce, pour the rest of the olive oil into a heavy based saucepan and gently heat the anchovies, garlic and chilli. Once fragrant, empty in the tinned tomatoes and a little water (i just add a little to the tin to also get the last of the tomato). Stir to combine all the lovely oil and then simmer, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes. Add in the salt, pepper, vinegar and sugar along with the roasted cherry tomatoes. Simmer for another 10 minutes so that the sauce is thick and rich.
     
  5. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and cook the gnocchi in batches, they will float to the top when they are ready. Drain and then add to the sauce, stirring over the heat until gnocchi have taken on all the lovely red of the sauce. Serve with lots of freshly grated parmesan and basil.
Sian Redgrave