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Potato gnocchi with tomato sauce in a black skillet.

Potato Gnocchi With Tomato Basil Sauce

In this dish, Potato Gnocchi with Tomato Basil Sauce, the humble potato is transformed into a melt-in-your mouth delicacy sure to dazzle family and friends.
Course Main Meal
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Potato Gnocchi with Tomato Basil Sauce
Servings 4
Author Marisa


Gnocchi Dough

  • 4 large russet potatoes about 2 pounds
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon beaten egg
  • 2 cups all purpose flour approximately

Tomato Basil Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • pinch of crushed chili pepper
  • 24 ounce jar Passata Italian strained tomatoes I used San Marzano
  • 2 sprigs of basil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup diced mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese


How To make Gnocchi

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Wash the potatoes under cold running water and pat dry.
  • Use a large knife and make a deep incision length-wise into each potato.
  • Place the potatoes on a cookie sheet and bake until they are tender, for about 1 hour.
  • Let potatoes cool a little but do peel them while they are still a bit warm.
  • Put them through a potato ricer. Alternately you can use a potato masher or a fork.
  • Place the mashed potatoes in a large bowl.
  • Add in the salt, 1 tablespoon of beaten egg and 1 and 1/2 cups of flour.
  • Using your hands, mix well just until the flour and potatoes stick together forming a rough looking dough.
  • Transfer the dough to a wooden board or work surface.
  • Knead the dough lightly, gradually adding a little bit of the remaining flour if the dough is sticking too heavily on your work surface. (I did not need all of the remaining 1/2 cup more of flour)
  • Knead for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • The dough should be smooth, pliable and just a little bit sticky.
  • Cut off a section of dough at a time.
  • Roll the piece of dough with a back and forth motion until you get the thickness of your index finger.
  • Cut the roll into 1 inch pieces.
  • Repeat with the remaining dough.
  • To shape the gnocchi, I used my little wooden gnocchi board with ridges.
  • Alternately, you can use the back of a fork .
  • Hold the fork at 45 degree angle, with the tines down on the work surface with its' inside curve towards you.
  • Take a gnocchi role and press it with your index finger against the tip end of the fork while quickly sliding it up along the length of the fork tins.
  • Or simply use your index and middle fingers by pressing both fingers down into the gnocchi and rolling quickly towards you. The gnocchi will flip over and have a pretty indentation.
  • Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough.
  • Transfer the gnocchi on a lightly floured cookie sheet and cover with a clean dish towel.
  • Set aside while you prepare the sauce.

Tomato Basil Sauce

  • Heat the oil in a medium sauce pot over medium low heat and sauté the garlic with the crushed chilli pepper just until fragrant, taking care not to burn the garlic. (should take less then a minute).
  • Add in the passata (Italian strained tomatoes), basil, salt and pepper and stir well.
  • Fill the bottle of passata three quarters full with water. Give it a good swirl and add this to the sauce.
  • Bring the sauce to a boil then lower the heat, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes or until the sauce thickens and the sweet concentrated flavors of the tomatoes come through.
  • While the sauce simmers, fill a large sauce pot with water and bring to a rapid boil.
  • Add salt to the boiling water and then the gnocchi.
  • Once the gnocchi come to surface they are pretty much ready. Leave them floating for about 10 seconds. (If they stay in the water too long, they will become mushy).
  • Remove the gnocchi with a slotted spoon and place them on a serving platter.
  • Pour a little of the sauce over the gnocchi, stir to combine then mix in the diced mozzarella.
  • The heat of the tomato sauce will slowly melt the mozzarella.
  • Divide the gnocchi onto four plates. Top with more sauce and Parmesan cheese.
  • Serve while still hot.