Pan-fried Gnocchi with Cranberries & Spinach Recipe

Did you realize you can fry gnocchi straight out of the pack?  You don't generally need to boil them first but we all like to take shortcuts whenever possible.  Ready-made gnocchi will certainly do the trick if you aren't ever willing to spend time preparing, rolling, slicing and boiling the gnocchi.  Ah, but sure give it a go.  Homemade gnocchi is worth the time and the effort.  

gnocchi on black plate

There are already recipes here to follow on my blog when cooking gnocchi suitable to enrich the menu for every occasion.  Gnocchi have exceptional variations both for taste and colors and can be mixed with pumpkin, spinach, beets, radicchio, nettles and can be enhanced with rich and original condiments.  

Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients for the gnocchi:
500g starchy potatoes
150g plain flour
50g whole grain semolina
1 egg
1 egg yolk
pinch of nutmeg (optional)
plain flour (for dusting)
knob of butter (for frying)

Ingredients for the sauce:
600 g fresh spinach
1 garlic clove
3 tbsp butter
80g blue cheese
4 chopped walnuts
handful of dried cranberries

For the gnocchi:
1. Rinse the potatoes and boil in salted water until tender, about 30 minutes. 

2. Drain, peel, and press through a potato ricer. Allow sitting in the hot pot for the moisture to evaporate. 

3. In a bowl, combine the potatoes with the flour, semolina, egg and egg yolk. Season with salt and nutmeg. If necessary, add extra flour so that the dough is malleable and not too sticky. 
4. On a lightly floured surface, roll the gnocchi dough into ropes that are 2cm thick in diameter. Cut into small gnocchi.

5. Simmer the gnocchi in a pot of boiling salted water until they rise to the surface, about 5 minutes.

6.  Heat butter in a frying pan. Fry gnocchi in batches until crisp and golden.

For the sauce:
1. Rinse the spinach and blanch in a pot of boiling salted water. Rinse with cold water to cool and finely chop.

2. Peel and chop the garlic. Heat the butter in a skillet and add the garlic to cook until fragrant. Stir in the spinach and the drained gnocchi, and toss until the spinach is wilted.

3. Divide the gnocchi between plates and crumble the blue cheese over top. Garnish with walnuts and cranberries.