Meryl Feinstein's Ossola-Style Gnocchi with Sage-Butter Sauce are hearty cold-weather dumplings from the Ossola Valley in northern Piedmont, only a few miles from the Swiss border. In addition to potatoes, these gnocchi include winter squash, chestnut flour, and nutmeg. The chestnut flour provides nuttiness and warmth: "It makes me want to put on a sweater and sit by the fire," Feinstein says. The chestnut flour is optional (you can replace the chestnut flour with equal weight of the "00" flour) but it's worth using—both for amplified flavor and the caramel color it will bring to the gnocchi. Feinstein pairs her gnocchi with butter and herbs, but instead of just tossing the blanched gnocchi in the sauce, Feinstein first crisps them in oil and then tosses them in the sage-infused butter just before serving to intensify their flavor and give them a pleasing crunch. The gnocchi can be made in advance and frozen; Feinstein recommends blanching gnocchi before freezing to prevent cracking and to help the dumplings maintain their integrity during cooking (see Note).
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Micah Morton / Prop Styling by Neville Crawford
Recipe Summary test
1 hr 5 mins
2 to 4 servings
Gnocchi can be prepared through step 10, drained, and dried for 30 minutes. Freeze on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer 1 hour. Transfer to a freezer bag, and freeze up to 3 months. To cook from frozen, boil in lightly salted water until gnocchi float. Proceed as directed.
Find chestnut flour at specialty grocery stores or online at nuts.com.
Minerally, complex Valle d'Aosta white: Les Cretes Petite Arvine.