Zuni Ricotta Gnocchi

Serves 4.
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
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Just a moment please...

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My favorite ricotta gnocchi recipe. Easy and simple to make!

Recipe from The Zuni Cookbook.


1 pound fresh ricotta
2 large cold eggs, lightly beaten
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, melted but not hot.
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (use the good stuff)
A pinch of salt
Flour for forming
2 sage leaves, some lemon zest, or nutmeg (all optional, but I used chopped sage for my version)

Butter sauce:

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 tablespoon water


1) It’s very important to find a dry fresh ricotta for this. Try not to use machine-packed supermarket ricotta or it will most likely have too much liquid. If it doubt, ask someone to help.

2) Wrap the ricotta with cheesecloth and let it sit overnight over a bowl to drain well. As much as 1/2-1 cup of liquid will most likely drain out which is very important.

3) Put all your ricotta in a big bowl. Beat it well to break up all the curds. Add in all your ingredients. Eggs first and then the other stuff. Beat everything really well. You should have a light batter that stays firm.

4) For actually forming the gnocchi you will need your batter, plus a sheet pan covered in about a 1/4 inch layer of flour and a second sheet pan (or a plate or something) with some parchment paper where you can put the gnocchi when they come out of the flour.

5) Take a spoonful of batter, scrape it off with your finger into the flour and roll it around lightly. Then pluck it from the flour (yes pluck!) and put it on your holding plate.

6) I recommend testing one of these gnocchi please before you make all 40 or 50 of them. Form a little dumpling, dunk it in flour, and then gently drop it into lightly boiling water. A rolling boil will destroy your delicate creation. After about 3 minutes, it should be done. It will float almost immediately, but I found that mine needed a few more minutes after they started floating.

7) Assuming your test gnocchi holds together and is delicious, repeat with the rest of the batter.

8) Lightly poach (don’t boil!) in salted water or if you want to get crazy, chicken stock.

9) For the sauce, put that stick of butter and the small amount of water in a large skillet. Once the butter is melted and lightly bubbling, I took my gnocchi out with a slotted spoon, let them drain for a second or two and dropped them right in the butter mixture.

Swirl them together and you are all set. Serve immediately.