Our 2013 Carr Sangiovese is a great wine with bright acidity which is great paired with this buttery gnudi dish. The gnudi take several days to form a delicious pasta layer so be sure to plan ahead when making this amazing dish.
- 1 lb. semolina flour
- 1 lb. sheep’s-milk ricotta
- 1+ oz. parmesan, finely grated
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 7 tbsp. slightly chilled unsalted butter
- 20 sage leaves
To make the gnudi:
1. Add about three-quarters of the semolina to a baking dish, spreading it out to form a more or less even layer. Put the rest of the semolina in a medium bowl. Make sure there’s space in your fridge to hold the baking dish.
2. Combine the ricotta, parmesan, and salt in a large bowl. Use a large wooden spoon to mash and stir the mixture until it’s well combined. Spread the mixture on a plate and stick in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm up slightly. Once the mixture has firmed scrape back into the bowl and mix again.
3. Take a small cookie scoop or a spoon and shape into small balls. Dump in the bowl of semolina and use your fingers to dump more semolina on top of the ricotta balls to coat them. Once coated pick up the ball and gently roll it in your fingertips and place it in the backing dish.
4. Once all the balls are formed and in the backing dish dump all remaining semolina flour over the top. Place the dish in the fridge for up to three days turning the balls several times a day.
5. Go by feel to see when the gnudi is ready. You want the semolina to create a layer around your balls that is thick enough to hold up when cooking. When the balls feel slightly firm and dry to the touch they are ready to go.
To cook the gnudi:
1. Fill a large wide pan or shallow pot two-thirds full with water, salt it generously, and bring it to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, transfer the gnudi to a large plate, giving each one a gentle shake to remove any loose semolina.
2. Put 3 tablespoons of the butter in a shallow pan large enough to hold the gnudi in one layer, add 1/3 cup of the hot salted water, and set over medium heat. once the butter has melted, take the pan off the heat.
3. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons butter to another large pan, set the pan over medium-high heat, and let the butter melt and foam until it goes slightly nutty and turns light golden brown. Add the sage to the butter in one layer and cook the leaves just until they’ve gone crispy, about 2 minutes. Transfer them to paper towels to drain and sprinkle them with salt. Keep the brown butter in a warm spot at the back of the stove, off the heat.
4. Place the gnudi into the boiling water and cook, gently shaking the pot once or stir carefully to make sure they don’t stick to the bottome, for 2 minutes. Set the pan with the butter-water mixture over high heat. Use a slotted spoon to quickly transfer the cooked gnudi to the butter-water and cook at a vigorous simmer, shaking the pan now and then, until the butter sauce thickens slightly and begins to cling to the gnudi, about 3 minutes.
5. Serve the gnudi in the pan or divide the gnudi among warm shallow bowls. Sprinkle on the parmesan and a little salt and garnish with the sage leaves. drizzle on as much of the brown butter as you’d like.
recipe adapted from Epicurious