Plumpcious dumpling deliciousness
Gnudi, little ricotta dumplings, are one of my go to comfort foods. One of my desert island dishes - if you could get a good supply of ricotta on a desert island. Good news is that there are stupendously simple to make and require only four ingredients: parmesan, ricotta, egg yolks and a little flour (or semolina). For a dish with so few ingredients, there are still variations: Jamie tosses his in semolina and adds some nutmeg; Simon tops his with sage butter but omits the egg yolk; while Martha does hers with spinach.
I started off using this recipe from Delicious Days, referred to as ricotta gnochi (gnudi, no?), which has particularly good instructions. I have since bastardised it and now just combine three small egg yolks, a tub of ricotta (they always seem to be the same size), a handful of grated parmesan and a couple of grinds of pepper in a bowl. I add just enough flour to make it start to bind together before turning out coating and chopping into bite sized pieces and throwing into a pot of boiling water. They are ready when they start to float. Simples.
The photos below show quite how simple this is. I would have included a photo of the end result - the cooked gnudi glistening with a slick of olive oil, confetti of basil and a few artfully toasted pine nuts - but, dear reader, I ate them. Before you can say "gnudi" the bowlful had been hoovered down before I had even thought to get the camera out. I am certain that Queen Nigella must also have that same disappearing food problem but probably just has able assistants able to ably whip up another batch before anyone notices. I will be making them again soon and I promise not to eat them before they are photographed.
As for serving... my top three are: a nutty sage butter; olive oil, basil and pine nuts (I would say deconstructed pesto but don't want to sound like a nob); or chilli flakes and garlic heated with olive oil. Delicious (and able to mask a dish that will inevitably look pale and doughy, albeit in a good way).