In Florence, 2 years ago, I had a ravioli dish that was served with a simple browned butter and sage sauce, that I found extremely divine. It may be because I was at the Piazza della Signora, but it was something to remember.
I have never made gnocchi before, and before I met George, I have never had it, either. I found it quite heavy, and it has taken me years to appreciate these small dumplings, which are made out of flour and potatoes. I shall try to make them one day, but this recipe uses store-bought gnocchi.
I was very lucky to have found fresh sage leaves at the supermarket recently. The Greeks call sage ‘Faskomilo’, and they usually have them dried and drunk as a type of herbal tea. I always think of sage as a savoury herb, to be used with food, thanks to years of having my Mom’s Roast Chicken, made with a Sage and Parsley Herb Stuffing from Paxo. It’s a very aromatic herb – smells wonderfully yummy, and a little goes a long way.
As for browned butter, how do you know when it is brown and not burned? Well, I used 1 piece of gnocchi dumpling to check the colour of the butter on it (since my frying pan is dark coloured, I couldn’t see if its brown!) like below. You can see that the butter has turned brown.
Ingredients: (for 2 -3 people)
- 500g of gnocchi
- 100g of butter
- sage leaves, about 16 medium-sized ones – best estimate about 2 tbsps worth of really small leaves.
- a squeeze of lemon juice
- grated parmesan cheese, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook the gnocchi according to packet instructions. I wait for the dumplings to rise up, and let them cook for another few minutes and then scoop them out and drain. Keep warm.
- In a pan, heat up the butter, on medium heat.
- Keep frying, until the butter starts smelling nutty, and turn lightly brown.
- Add the sage leaves to it, and continue frying until the leaves are crispy. Add a small squeeze of lemon juice here, and it will sizzle slightly.
- Add the cooked gnocchi in the pan, one layer at a time and brown slightly.
- Toss gently, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Serve on a plate with some grated parmesan cheese on the side.