Gnocchi bolognese

By admin
13 November 2013

An Italian twist to traditional bolognese turns a meal into a feast

Serves 4

Preparation time: 10 min

Cooking time: 1 hour

6 bacon rashers, chopped

1 onion, chopped

5 sprigs of thyme, chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

15 ml (1 T) oil

500 g beef mince

250 ml (1 c) beef stock

5 ml (1 t) dried mixed herbs

30 ml (2 T) tomato paste

500 ml (2 c) white pasta sauce

salt and pepper

2 bay leaves


3 potatoes


1 egg

250 ml (1 c) flour


handful of basil

1    Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

2    Put the bacon, onion, thyme and garlic in a food processor and blitz until finely chopped

3    Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the bacon mixture and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until the onion has softened. Add the mince and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon to break up any lumps, for 10 minutes or until browned.

4    Add the stock and simmer until reduced. Stir in the mixed herbs, tomato paste and pasta sauce and season with salt and pepper. Add the bay leaves, cover and cook for 20 minutes.

5    Gnocchi: Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for 40 minutes or until they’re soft. Remove from the water one at a time with a slotted spoon, put on a cutting board and peel. Mash the potatoes while still hot until they’re nice and fluffy and without lumps. Allow to cool, about 10-15 minutes.

6    Pull the cooled potatoes into a heap, drizzle with the egg and sprinkle the flour over the top. Use a spatula to incorporate the egg and flour into the potatoes. Fold until the mixture is a light crumble. Knead very gently, adding a little more flour if the dough is too tacky. The dough should be moist but not sticky.

7    Cut into 10 pieces. Gently roll each into a long roll, roughly the thickness of your thumb. Use a knife to cut pieces every 3 cm. Dust with more flour.

8    Bring salted water to the boil in a large saucepan. Cook the gnocchi in batches of about 20. When cooked they will pop up to the top. Remove a few at a time with a slotted spoon.

9    To serve: Divide the gnocchi among serving bowls, top with the bolognese sauce and garnish with basil.

- Hope Malau

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