I welcome the beginning of Fall with my cotija gnocchi recipe. This recipe can make a great after school dinner or a delicious Sunday supper, it is the epitome of eating grand on a simple scale with a few ingredients. Most gnocchi recipes call for the use of potatoes, egg, and flour, and once in a while a portion of finely grated parmesan cheese. I have been making gnocchi for a while and prefer the use of Cacique’s cotija cheese (crumbled extra fine) to the standard parmesan. The Cotija not only elevates the taste of the gnocchi, it makes the dumpling lighter and fluffier. I highly recommend making the swap. Here is my recipe to help you enjoy gnocchi like you never thought before. I also make a simple tomato base and add chunks of Cacique’s Oaxaca cheese to the mix and a drizzle of Cacique’s Crema con Sal for the perfect sauce. Give this lovely dish a try this Fall and serve it all winter long too.
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WHAT YOU NEED
- 1/8 – cup olive oil
- 1/2 – cup onion (chopped)
- 4 – cloves garlic (minced)
- 28 – oz. crushed tomatoes
- 2 – Large russet potatoes
- 1/3 – cup Cacique’s Cotija Cheese (crumbled extra fine), plus a little extra for garnish
- 1 – large egg
- 1/2 – teaspoon salt
- 1/2 – teaspoon black pepper
- 1 1/2 – cups flour
- 1 – Cacique’s Oaxaca Cheese (Cut into 15 -1 inch pieces)
- 3 – tablespoons Cacique’s Crema Con Sal
- Fresh basil
HOW TO MAKE IT
- In a large sauce pan over a medium flame add in olive oil and allow to get hot. Add onion to olive oil and sauté for 10 minutes. Then add in garlic and continue to sauté for an additional 4 minutes. Pour in the crushed tomatoes and allow to cook for another 5 minutes. Pour the tomato sauce into a large baking dish 9x13. Set to the side until gnocchi is cooked.
- Place potatoes in a pot and cover with water. Place over a medium high flame and bring to a boil. Cook for 40 minutes or until you can pierce all the way through with a fork. Drain potatoes from water and allow to cool for a few minutes. Peel potatoes then place in a bowl and smash with a potato ricer.
- Spread the smashed potatoes in a thin layer on a work surface and allow to cool completely. Gather the cooled potatoes and place in a large bowl. Add in Cotija cheese, and mix to combine.
- In a small bowl combine egg, salt and pepper, and whisk. Pour egg over potato / cotija mixture. Using both hands knead the mixture together.
- Sprinkle 1/2 cup of flour on a work surface, then place potato/cotija / egg mixture on top of work surface. Add remaining flour to the top of the potato/cotija / egg mixture and knead until completely combined.
- Divide gnocchi dough into 8 equal parts. Roll each part into a long 1/2 inch rope using both hands. Cut the rope into 1/2 inch pieces and roll each piece in your hands to form a little ball. Using the tines of a fork press it into the ball of dough. Then place on top of your pinky to indent the center. Place gnocchi on a floured tea towel and continue making the gnocchi until all dough is used.
- In a large pot over a high flame add 8 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of salt. Bring to a boil. While water is coming to a boil, Preheat the broiler to high.
- Add in 1/4 amount of the gnocchi into the boiling water. Stir gently and allow gnocchi to cook. They should rise to the top of the water after about a minute. Remove gnocchi from water with a slotted spoon, and place in tomato sauce baking dish. Continue to cook in batches until all gnocchi is cooked.
- Add in Cacique’s Oaxaca cheese chunks and drizzle with Cacique’s Crema con Sal. Place baking dish under the broiler until cheese is bubbly and browned about 10 minutes. Garnish with fresh basil and crumbled cotija cheese. Enjoy!