Potato Gnocchi with Beef Ragu

We were delighted to welcome Sophie Budd all the way from Australia as a guest chef in our kitchen. She made use of a glut of potatoes to create this delicious Italian-style gnocchi.

Recipe by: Sophie Budd

Ingredients:

Gnocchi

  • 6 large or 8 small potatoes – around 1.2kg (such as Russets, Désirée, King Edwards, Maris Pipers)
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 120g plain flour
  • 20g finely grated parmesan
  • plain flour, to dust.

Beef Ragu

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 500g beef chuck, in strips or small pieces
  • 500g overripe tomatoes, blitzed (or use passata)
  • 1 teaspoon wattleseed
  • 1 teaspoon native thyme
  • 1 teaspoon crushed pepperberry
  • salt and pepper

Method

For the Potato Gnocchi:

  1. Bake the potatoes whole until tender (approx. 45 minutes at 220C), remove from the oven and split to allow steam to escape. Leave to one side to cool slightly before scooping out the flesh. Pass the flesh through a potato ricer or food mill onto a clean work surface.
  2. Whisk the egg and pour on top of the potato, add the flour, seasoning and cheese. Chop through with a plastic dough scraper and combine gently without stirring and smearing.
  3. Once the mix is combined, form into a ball and put to one side.
  4. Clean the surface then dust with flour. Cut off a small bit of dough and using your palms, roll the gnocchi gently into a long sausage shape about a half-inch wide.
  5. Cut this with a scraper or knife into one-inch gnocchi pieces and place on a floured tray. Repeat until all the dough is rolled and cut.

For the Beef Ragu

  1. In a large pan on medium heat fry the onion in the oil until translucent, then add the garlic and fry for a further 2 minutes.
  2. Add the beef and brown, stirring frequently.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook on a low heat until the meat is tender and the sauce is saucy!

To Serve

  1. Add the gnocchi to a large pot of boiling salted water. When it floats to the top it is done. Use a slotted or spider spoon to lift out the gnocchi and place in a deep roasting tray.
  2. Pour over the beef ragu, stir lightly to combine and top with Parmesan.
  3. Bake at 200C until bubbly and golden. Serve.

 

Cook’s Notes

Gnocchi is a great way to use up old potatoes for a hearty meal. In this recipe, Australian herbs and spices lend a twist to a beef ragu.

Gnocchi also goes fantastically with tomato and cheese sauces.

To ensure the gnocchi remains light and fluffy, ‘chop’ the dough with a scraper until it comes together instead of kneading with your hands.

This recipe uses only the flesh after the potatoes have been baked, the skins can be re-baked until crispy and served with dips as a snack.