Simple, comforting gnocchis always steal the show. They are also a really fun project to make with children.
2 large potatoes (either Yukon Gold or Russet)
3/4 cups all-purpose or gluten-free flour
1 egg (only if using gf flour)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 small shallots (or 1 large)
zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons shelled pistachios
1 Tablespoon olive oil
To make the sauce:
Peel and thinly slice the shallot. Add oil to a medium size frying pan and heat it on medium-high heat for about a minute. When it starts to shimmer add the shallots, lower the heat to medium, and cook until the shallots taken on a light amber color. Stir frequently. Sprinkle a bit of kosher salt over the shallots (about 1/4 teaspoon). It's okay if some of the edges get a little darker and crispy. It adds a nice texture. Once the shallots are done turn off the heat but leave them on the stove, close by to where you will be boiling your gnocchi.
Chop your pistachios, zest your lemon, and set aside. When you cook your gnocchi you will scoop them out with a slotted spoon and go directly into your shallot pan.
To serve toss the gnocchi in the pan with the pistachios, and lemon zest. You can also squeeze a little lemon juice and add a drizzle of olive oil to finish, then sprinkle a little Malden salt on top.
To make the gnocchi:
Wash and pat dry your potatoes. Using a sharp knife make a few small incisions all over the potato. Bake them at 375º until tender.
As soon as the potatoes are completely cooked, remove them from the oven, slice them, and open them in half so that the steam can escape. The hardest part of making gnocchi is that you want to start working with the potatoes while they are still hot. As soon as it's tolerable to work with them do so. Peel off their skins and rice (or mash) them onto a clean work surface. A ricer is essential for smooth gnocchi, but not necessary if you are okay with a more rustic, chunky dumpling.
Sprinkle salt over your potatoes, then flour. Push and smush the mixture until it comes together, then knead it for a few minutes until it feels pliable.
Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces. Roll each into even sized ropes, then cut each rope as evenly as possible into little pillow shaped pieces. If your dough is sticking dust the surface with a little flour, but I find that if you work with warm potatoes this will rarely happen.
I always keep my gnocchi in little pillow shapes. Running them through the tines of a fork is an extra step that doesn't add enough to the end product to merit the effort. If you feel it's a must, by all means do so.
To cook the gnocchi bring a pan of boiling salted water to a boil then lower the heat to a strong simmer. You want the water very hot but not at an aggressive boil, which can make tender gnocchi fall apart. Work in batches and don't crowd the pan. They are cooked when they float to the surface. Remove them with a slotted spoon and toss them with the sauce.
For gluten free gnocchi the steps above are the same with the exception of adding in 1/2 a beaten egg with your flour and salt to provide a little more structure. You may also need to add a tiny bit more gf free flour if the dough feels a bit wet. Knead first then decide.