Channel your inner Italian chef as you tackle this Gnocchi with Pork Ragu recipe. These little dumplings that are made from fresh ingredients will encourage you to make this dish more than this one time.
Gnocchi (little Italian dumplings traditionally made with potato, flour and egg) are a delicious alternative to pasta, with origins stemming from ancient Rome. It is traditionally created in Italian households from a unique mixture of flour, egg, and sometimes potato.
This particular recipe focuses on creating some very flavorful pork pieces that are covered in a rich savory sauce with a great serving of vegetables. Gnocchi, like most pasta, is a fairly neutral type of carbohydrate so it is paired well with the well-seasoned meat as one (the meat and the gnocchi) doesn’t overwhelm the other. Instead, the flavors harmonize together, similar to a neutral bowl of white rice drizzled with a rich and flavorful savory sauce.
Savor the authentically soft pillows with this decadent pork ragu sauce. This is the perfect dish for serving your family or friends a comforting dinner or a flavorful weekend lunch meal. If you’re looking to have an Italian meal, we’ve suggested some other recipes that would pair exceptionally well with these lovely dumplings.
Start your Italian meal off with a Panzanella Tuscan Bread Salad recipe or a Chicken and Wild Rice Soup recipe, paired with either this White Spritz Cocktail or this bubbly and slightly sweet Lo Scintillante. Finish off with some uplifting Tiramisu recipe or this sweet and chocolatey dessert called the Dulce De Leche Chocolate Dipped Cannoli.
For the Gnocchi:
- 4 ½ pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 2 to 2½ cups All-Purpose flour
For the Pork:
- 1, 1 ½-pound boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), cut into 1 1/2″ pieces
- Kosher salt, a sprinkle
- Freshly ground pepper, a sprinkle
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more
- 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled, finely chopped
- 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 sprig of rosemary
- 1 sprig of oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 1, 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- Heat oven to 425 degrees.
- Place potatoes on a baking sheet and bake until the point that a knife can enter them easily, about 45 Mins to an hour, depending on the side of the potatoes. Peel potatoes while they are still warm and pass them through a ricer or food mill.
- Mix in salt, eggs and enough flour to make a dough which holds its shape but is not too stiff. Roll the dough out into logs with the width of your thumb and cut into 1 inch lengths. Roll each piece against a fork or grooved board to make the traditional gnocchi shape.
- Cover gnocchi with a clean dish towel and place in the refrigerator until ready to cook.
- Season pork with salt and pepper. Heat 1/4 cup oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook the meat, turning occasionally, until browned, (About 10–15 Mins.) Transfer to a large plate.
- Drain all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the pot. Reduce heat to Medium and cook the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Stir occasionally, until they turn a golden brown color, (About 8–10 Mins). Tie rosemary, oregano, and bay leaf into a bundle with kitchen twine; then add it into the pot, along with the pork, tomatoes, wine, peppercorns, nutmeg, and cloves. Add water just to cover the meat and bring it to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer, adding more water as needed, until meat is very tender, (About 1 – 1 1/2 hours).
- Discard the herb bundle. Using 2 forks, shred meat in the pot; cook, uncovered, over Medium heat until the sauce starts to thicken, (About 8–10 Mins).
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil and then add the gnocchi. Cook until they rise to the top and are no longer doughy in the center, (About 3 Mins). Do not overcook the gnocchi or they will fall apart.
- Toss gnocchi with the ragu and top with grated parmesan.