Thursday, May 14, 2009

Daring Cooks Challenge

The very first Daring Cooks challenge is Ricotta Gnocchi!

When I joined the Daring Kitchen we discussed the cooks challenges to be a joint effort, so we made this recipe together.
I was super excited about this challenge, because I LOVE gnocchi! I've never gotten around to making it before, so this was the perfect opportunity.

I asked Brian earlier in the week if he could go to Delmonico's and pick up some fresh ricotta. We had planned on making the gnocchi for dinner on Saturday evening, so he would pick it up on Friday after work. Well, I completely forgot about it, so I didn't mention to him how much to pick up. Once he pulled up to the market he wondered if they would even have fresh ricotta. He walked up the stairs and there was a sign FRESH RICOTTA. When he asked for some, he had to guess how much so he said two pounds (we only needed 1 pound).

This recipe needs to be started 24 hours ahead so you can drain the ricotta and get it as dry as possible. I did that but very little water came out. The "dough" did seem rather soft, and it was very delicate. We both shaped the dough, which required a very light tough. They were not the easiest to make, and they didn't turn out the prettiest. The real test is to see if they hold together when boiled. I tried the "two testers" and they held together well. The recipe suggests putting them in the fridge to firm up a bit. We wouldn't do that again, they dough ended up getting sticky and it wasn't easy getting them off the paper. Brian plopped them into the boiling water, they stayed together for the most part. If we would make them again I would have the water boiling, but not at a rapid boil. It is easier on them.

I decided on making a sauce for Lidia's Italian- American Cookbook. My In-laws gave me this cookbook a number of years ago one Christmas, and it is one of my favorites! I loove Lidia!! Anyways the sauce I made was a Contessa sauce. It was very rich, and very good. This is the type of sauce you make once a year. It had cream, butter, basil, pine nuts, prosciutto. Now you know why you make it once a year.
The gnocchi was very light and quite good. The kids really liked it and so did Brian and I. I'm not sure if I would make this again, it was good, but didn't have that WOW factor for me.
I loved that this challenge made me try a new ingredient, fresh ricotta. We had quite a bit extra, so we put some on homemade pizza with roasted tomatoes and fresh basil. We added honey to it and used it as a dip for fruit.
Thanks Lis and Ivonne for the challenge! We enjoyed it and had fun!


Charli said...

That sounds like quite the yummy once a year sauce!!

Amy I. said...

Your gnocchi look delicious! It's fun seeing what other bloggers came up with for the challenge. Nice work :)

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