A wonderful and simple gnocchi dish can be made by saucing the gnocchi with just sage, butter and grated Grana Padano cheese. A more complex version, offered here, adds Ricotta, smoked or not—for a dish typical of the Friuli region.
- 4 ounces ricotta salata or ricotta affumicata cheese
- ¼ cup unsalted butter
- 6 fresh sage leaves
- ½ cup chicken stock, canned low sodium chicken broth, or reserved gnocchi cooking water
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 recipe Gnocchi
- 6 quarts salted water
- ¼ cup freshly grated Grana Padano cheese
A wonderful and simple gnocchi dish can be made by saucing the gnocchi with just sage, butter and grated Grana Padano cheese. With a vegetable peeler or the slicing slide of a box grater, shave the ricotta into think shards. Place the shards, without pressing them together, in a covered bowl in the refrigerator. In a large skillet, melt the butter over low heat. Add the sage and stir for 2 minutes. Add the stock and cream and bring to a boil. Season with pepper to taste and remove from the heat. While you prepare the gnocchi, bring the salted water to a boil in a large pot over high heat. Cook and drain the gnocchi. Add the gnocchi to the sage sauce. Stir over low heat with a wooden spoon until the gnocchi are coated with sauce and heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the Grana Padano and pepper to taste. Transfer to shallow bowls, scatter the shaved ricotta over the gnocchi, and serve immediately. Note: Ricotta salata is a smooth, firm, pure white sheep’s milk cheese imported from Italy. Ricotta affumicata is a lightly smoked version of the same cheese. Both are available in cheese and specialty stores and Italian grocers.