Italian Recipe for Gnocchi Fritti
What's a piece of fried dough called in Emilia Romagna? A "gnocco fritto"! If you can't make it to Italy on a cooking vacation, don't worry, it's easy to prepare at home. And as it is traditionally eaten with cheese, Prosciutto di Parma, or other types of salamis, it is the perfect recipe to wrap up our cheese week here at The International Kitchen.
500 g (17.5 oz) all purpose flour
70 g (2.5 oz) lard
1 T sugar
10 g (1 1/2 tsp) salt
180 ml approximately of water (about 3/4 cup), room temperature
12 g fresh yeast (4 1/4 tsp fresh yeast or 1 packet active dry yeast)
oil (or lard) for frying
Dissolve the yeast in the water. Place the flour, lard, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer (or place on a work surface with the lard in a well in the flour). Add the water slowly and mix for about 10 minutes, until it resembles the smoothness of bread or pizza dough.
Set aside in a lightly oiled bowl and let rise for a couple of hours.
Working with a quarter of the dough at a time, place on a lightly floured surface, roll one piece to about 1/4 inch thick (keep the other pieces covered). With a ravioli cutter (or knife), cut the dough into squares or rhombuses (6-8 cm long). Repeat with the remaining pieces. (You can reuse any scraps by kneading them together and letting them rest for 15 minutes.)
Meanwhile, in a large, deep skillet, heat the oil to 350 degrees F. Add the rectangles slowly, making sure not to crowd the pot or lower the temperature of the oil (some cooks do them one at a time!). Fry until they puff up, about 1 minute, then turn them over repeatedly as they fry for a few more minutes, until they are golden brown on all sides. Drain on a paper towel.
If you'd like to try your hand at making gnocchi fritti on an Italian cooking vacation with The International Kitchen, please check out our website or contact us for details.
By Peg Kern