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Gnocchi fail

For the inaugural post of “We Cook When We Can,” we decided to tackle gnocchi. We based our attempt of the 101 Cookbooks recipe, but replaced the wheat flour with almond flour since C doesn’t eat gluten. The instructions warned us that this recipe was not for the faint of heart, but we were determined to make it work.

Things started off smoothly. We boiled the potatoes and enjoyed some catching up until they were tender.

Once the potatoes were tender, we removed them from the water and, as soon as they were cool enough to handle, peeled and deconstructed them.

After spreading the deconstructed potatoes across two cutting boards and letting them cool, we mounded them into a ball, added the egg and almond flour, and mixed the whole mess together.

Next up, we kneaded the dough and rolled divided pieces it into long, snake-like rolls. We followed the instructions to cut these long rolls into small pieces and mark them with the tines of a fork.

Well, dear reader, this is where things got ugly. (It’s also when we forgot to take pictures.) We returned the water used to cook the potatoes to a boil and eagerly dropped 20 gnocchi into the pot. We anxiously stood over the pot to look for our first labor of love to pop to the service. Although L doesn’t watch the show, what happened next is best described with a Lost reference. All of a sudden, a starchy smoke monster erupted from the water. It left as quickly as it appeared, but it took all the gnocchi with it. They were just gone. We performed a search and rescue first with a slotted spoon and then with a strainer, but it the starch monster had dissolved all of our gnocchi.

After taking a few minutes to pour a glass of wine and discuss how this could have gone so wrong, we decided to try plan B.  We lined a cookie sheet with parchment paper and baked these bad boys.

We wish we could tell you that these were tender, light and delicate, but really, these were tater tots. The good news is….

Pesto covered tater tots aren’t half bad.

Why did we choose to post what was arguably both of our biggest culinary disasters ever? Because we love to cook and we love to try new recipes. Cooking isn’t just about the meal, it’s about the process and what you learn along the way.  Even though these gnocchi did not turn out as planned, we can’t think of a way we would have rather spent this cold, New England, Saturday night than tackling a tricky new recipe. And, please be certain that we will take what we’ve learned and try again.

C&L

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