The secret to making delicious gluten-free, dairy-free gnocchi

gluten and dairy free gnocchi
Photo: Leia Marasovich
the plantpower way Italia book cover
Photo: Leia Marasovich

Is it sacrilegious to not eat gluten or dairy in Italy? For some, it might be. But for Julie Piatt and Rich Roll, authors of the new book, The Plantpower Way: Italia, eating plant-based meals is their prerogative, no matter where they are.

“The book was inspired by the transformational retreats we hold every year at a special villa in the Tuscan countryside,” says Roll. Their goal: to show people how to eat healthier, kinder, and more sustainable food while enjoying the best flavors of Italy.

This classic gnocchi recipe (that happens to be gluten and dairy-free) does just that. Wheat flour is swapped for organic corn flour, rice flour (or any other gluten-free flour) to make the gnocchi, and nutritional yeast is used instead of eggs to hold them together. It gets topped off with a delicious homemade tomato sauce and macadamia nut parmesan cheese (that’s surprisingly simple to make). “Just jump in and have fun with it,” suggests Roll. “You’ll see it’s not as difficult as it looks.”   

Gluten-free and Dairy-free Gnocchi

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  • Prep Time
    1 hour
  • Cook Time
    30 minutes
  • Servings
    people

Ingredients

For the gnocchi

For the tomato sauce

For the macadamia parmesan

Instructions

For the gnocchi

  1. Peel the potatoes. In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring water to a boil and add the potatoes. Boil for about 30 minutes, until tender. Drain and allow to cool.

  2. On a large cutting board or work surface, dice the cooked potatoes into small pieces. Add the flour, nutritional yeast, olive oil, and salt.

  3. Combine the mixture with your hands and knead to form a dough. Knead, flipping it over and turning it, for about 15 minutes, until all lumps are removed.

  4. Add a handful of flour to the work surface. Divide the dough into four sections. Using both hands, roll each section into a long, cord-size piece, about 16 inches long. Cut the cords into half-inch pieces.

  5. Roll the half-inch pieces between your hands and place on the wood pasta board. Make a slight indentation with your thumb and roll them gently into a gnocchi shape using the grooved wooden pasta board or the tines of a fork. Repeat with the other sections of dough.

  6. In a large pot over high heat, bring water to a boil. Carefully add the gnocchi and boil for just a few minutes, until they float to the top of the water.

  7. Drain the gnocchi in a colander. Transfer to a serving plate and drizzle with olive oil.

For the tomato sauce

  1. In a deep saucepan over high heat, bring six cups of water to a boil; add the tomatoes. Boil for five minutes, or until the skin begins to peel off.

  2. In the pitcher of a high-speed blender, place the tomatoes, garlic, and onion. Blend on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add water in two tablespoons increments and continue blending to reach desired consistency.

  3. Add sauce to a medium saucepan over medium-low heat; add the olive oil. Heat until warm, about five minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

For the macadamia parmesan

  1. In a food processor, pulse macadamia nuts until mealy. Add the miso and pulse for 15 seconds. Add the nutritional yeast, salt, and acidophilus and pulse for 15 seconds. Add the coconut oil and process.

  2. Grease a 6 x 31/2 x 2-inch rectangular mold with coconut oil or line with plastic wrap.

  3. Press the mixture firmly into the mold, cover with parchment paper, and refrigerate for 24 to 48 hours.

  4. Turn the cheese out of the mold and place it on a cutting board. Cut with a very sharp knife or crumble. Cheese will keep for about two weeks covered and refrigerated.

To serve

  1. Pour the tomato sauce over the gnocchi and sprinkle with Macadamia Parmesan.

  2. Garnish with basil and pepper.

Recipe Notes

Reprinted from The Plantpower Way: Italia by arrangement with Avery Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, A Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © 2018, Julie Piatt and Rich Roll. If you're planning a trip to Italy, check out this under-the-radar island and these tips for traveling solo.

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