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Apr 16, 2013 11:16 AM

Storebought Gnocchi?

Call me lazy; call me a coward; but don't call me a gnocchi-maker. Tried to make these once and bollixed 'em up big-time. Never again! But I still love the li'l bastards, and toward that end have contemplated buying premade gnocchi that have been popping up on grocery shelves with increasing frequency.

Anybody tried 'em? Are they worth a crap?

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  1. Sorry to be negative, but the packaged gnocchi are a world apart from freshly made. They are gluey, heavy, tasteless and totally forgettable blobs of starch. I basically never eat gnocchi because I'm too lazy to make my own and no restaurant in my city serves anything but the packaged crap.

    When I was a teenager my dad took a year off, trying to figure out in which direction he'd go after selling his business. He took on the odd dinner at home and actually made spinach gnocchi a couple of times. The memory of them, plus a baked semolina gnocchi I made once a few years after that, are so wonderful that nothing short of homemade gnocchi can compare.

    1. They may technically be gnocchi, but like a bad matzoh ball having the right ingredients doesn't guarantee a good result.

      Gnocchi is possibly the easiest pasta to make. Add salted flour to riced baked potatoes and just a touch of olive oil, roll into snakes (this is the only tricky part because you want to compress more than roll since the mixture will tend to be crumbly). Cut each snake into individual rounds and add to salted boiling water. Scoop 'em out when they float to the surface.

      1. I too am gnocchi-phobic. And I agree, the store bought gnocchi can't compare to fresh. So, what do I do? Wait until I am at a good Italian restaurant and enjoy them there. Why settle for something inferior just to have it? Do you really HAVE to have them at home?

        3 Replies
        1. re: ttoommyy

          Obviously, I don't HAVE to have them at home, but I'd like to. But I'm not about to plump for third-rate gnocchi just to have them.

          1. re: Perilagu Khan

            "Obviously, I don't HAVE to have them at home, but I'd like to."

            I get that, but my point was why not let them remain something special that you only get when dining out? A while back I surrendered to this philosophy with a few food items and it adds another level to eating out at favorite restaurants.

            Or your can go to Italy. :)

        2. Buy'em and eat'em...

          With store bought gnocchi; I suggest giving them a little bit of a pan-fry before eating them (after boiling them).

          (google for recipes).

          1 Reply
          1. re: Maximilien

            "With store bought gnocchi; I suggest giving them a little bit of a pan-fry before eating them (after boiling them)."

            On the few occasions I have bought gnocchi at the supermarket, I purchased the De Cecco whole wheat variety, boiled them for a couple of minutes then sauteed them in a little olive oil and butter until a bit crispy then tossed with fresh Parmigiano Reggiano. Very tasty, but not really what I think of when I think of gnocchi. They are a dish unto themselves. :)

          2. These may not be to your liking at all, but the French gnocchi are a little more forgiving. Here's a link to, I think, Jacques Pepin's recipe. We made them once. Eh, okay. But not as dense as the potato version. And, if you like that potato texture, won't satisfy you. Weir Cooking in Wine Country has pretty much the exact same recipe.

            Just for your comparison.