Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Burned Butter Sage

When I lived in Perth, Australia I had a friend that lived way on the other side of the country near Canberra. For those of you who don’t know, Australia is huge so when I say way on the other side of the country I mean wayyyy on the other side of the country. It takes roughly about four hours to fly from Perth to Canberra.

Anyway this friend, we’ll call him Geoff (because that’s his name) really liked to putter around in the kitchen, not just the barbie like most Aussie men (oooh, got my funny pants on today!). One day he posted on facebook that he made his wife a gorgeous dish of sweet potato gnocchi with burned butter sage. That had my attention right away and I was impressed that the dude can COOK!

So I’ve been thinking about this dish on and off for about 3 years now. I’ve made regular gnocchi and it turned out quite well (pre-blog days) but with all those great sweet potatoes in the shops these days I knew it was finally time to give this beautiful and impressive dish a go.

Ingredients: 3 medium sweet potatoes, approximately 1 1/2 cups flour, salt and pepper, 1/4 cup butter, fresh sage.

I bought three sweet potatoes of roughly the same size, poked some holes in them and roasted them in the oven until I could stick a fork easily into their centres. Then as quickly as I could (dinner was a rush job as football was about to start!) I peeled the steaming skin off my fingers, I mean…potatoes and cut them into chunks.

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Then I got out my shiny new food mill and mushed the sweet potatoes into fine, fluffy bits. Actually, I managed to get hubby to do the dirty work while I attempted to take an action shot.

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With all of the sweet potatoes dumped out onto the counter, I kneaded in flour until the mixture became a cohesive dough. Since I started with three good sized sweet potatoes I may have used around 1 1/2 cups of flour. I did also add some freshly grated pepper and salt to the mixture.  Keep your work surface well floured and you shouldn’t have any sticky dough problems.

Next, I divided the dough into four and rolled each bit into a long rope about 2 cm wide. If you like your gnocchi a bit smaller, make the ropes a bit thinner.

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For the next step I enlisted the help of kid number 2. I figured she would be a good hand model while I took the action shots. She’s also pretty smart so she caught on right away to the gnocchi shaping.  My kids all really love gnocchi so this wasn’t too much trouble for her. We started reminiscing about when her grandparents took all three kids to a nice Italian restaurant and grandpa ordered the ‘gah-naw-chi’. Oh, they were slightly embarrassed but made sure to wait until the server was gone to correct grandpa’s pronunciation. Now every time we have gnocchi the story gets retold and we all have a chuckle at grandpa’s expense.

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To shape the gnocchi, she rolled the piece of dough in her hands until it was an oval shape, then used a fork to indent one side. The ridges created by the fork help to hold the sauce on the gnocchi.

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Despite the huge amount of gnocchi to be made, kid  number 2 disappeared after her slight guest appearance. It took me a while to finish the rest of them but the good thing is that this recipe made enough for two meals and gnocchi freezes well.

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And after all of that at least the ‘sauce’ was really quick and effortless. I added 1/4 cup of butter to the pan and heated it until the little flecks of milk solids turned all brown and caramel-ly. Somewhere in there I threw in a handful of fresh sage leaves so they would be nice and crispy. After the gnocchi had boiled and become buoyant I scooped them out of the water and into the burned butter.

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25 comments

  1. Kari @ bite-sized thoughts

    I have never had sweet potato gnocchi, but given how much I like sweet potato, I think I would love it. Thanks for the idea!

    1. dishnthekitchen

      you should! it’s pretty easy and the flavour is really great.Let me know how it goes!

  2. Vinny Grette

    I’ve sent this one on to my chef husband and fellow Genawchi lover for his attention – would love these!

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Sweet. Let me know how it goes….

  3. Lisa the Gourmet Wog

    Looks great!! Love the colour of the gnocchi, just so vibrant and gorgeous

  4. Eva

    I love gnocchi, however, I always find the traditional, potato ones too starchy and heavy after I eat them. I’m gonna bookmark this and make it when school is less busy! 😀

    1. dishnthekitchen

      I think the keys points are to bake the potatoes, use a potato ricer, and be as cheap with the flour as possible.

  5. sugarlovespices

    Beautiful job Bernice! They look perfect and I am sure they tasted wonderful! I’ve never had sweet potato gnocchi but would love to taste them! The brown butter and sage sauce is the right compliment for those gnocchi.

    1. dishnthekitchen

      thank you…I think I need to make them again soon. So simple and tasty!

  6. MeaghanC

    I like the photos and would leave them. Some of the lighting isn’t great but overall they are pretty good! The photos definitely put my first post photos to shame 😉 Great recipe!

    1. dishnthekitchen

      haha, these are the ‘fixed version’. I just took the cheesy orange frames off.

      1. MeaghanC

        I also went through a frame stage and a need to put big artistic titles on my photos stage. Now I like to keep it simple 🙂

  7. Ginni

    Lovely post and beautiful pictures as always. I adore brown butter sauce, actually I adore the inclusion of butter in every sauce I think…..

  8. peppersandpennies

    Seriously I am obsessed with gnocchi right now but haven’t ventured as far as to make them myself! This looks like the perfect recipe to give me a bit of a push in the right direction!

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Give it a try…you can also search for the Ricotta Gnocchi (Gnudi) recipe on my blog. They are pretty easy for a beginner gnocchi and still amazing!

  9. Janice

    I’ve only made gnocchi a couple times (squash gnocchi once and ricotta gnocchi another time), and both times, I was amazed at how simple it was. If the recipe is right, it’s really just a matter of mixing and shaping. These look perfect! I am definitely bookmarking this for my next attempt at gnocchi 🙂

    1. dishnthekitchen

      thank you Janice. I think the trick is to really be cheap with adding the flour. You want just enough that it holds together, but not enough to make them doughy and heavy.

  10. Jacqueline Rose

    I am hosting a smorgasbord style “Italian Night” with 20 friends this week and Gnocchi is on the list of possible things to make. I am definitely going to share your recipe amongst the group – this looks so amazing! Browned butter and sage is always such a nice flavour combination, I imagine it would go perfectly with this.

    1. dishnthekitchen

      oh that sounds like so much fun! I hope you make it and let me know how it turns out…have fun!

  11. Justine @ JustineCelina.com

    Wow, everything about this sounds absolutely incredible. Pinning now and will definitely try!

  12. Teresa

    I’ve only made gnocchi once, years ago. I agree with Janice, it’s surprisingly simple. Yours look perfect and sound delicious.

  13. Isabelle @ Crumb

    I tried my hand at gnocchi a few years back, but they turned out really dense and not very good at all… so heartbreaking after all the work it took to make them!
    Yours look beautifully light and tender, though. I think I might just have to work up the nerve and try your recipe sometime soon. Hopefully I’ll have better luck the second time around!

    1. dishnthekitchen

      Yes!! Homemade gnocchi is so much better than store bought Isabelle!

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