The Meal That Got Me Through Quarantine

When quarantine boredom strikes, what better way to fill your time with than cooking some delicious sweet potato gnocchi?

Deputy Culture Editor Addison Aloian makes her sweet potato gnocchi recipe, topping it with sage, paprika, and cheese. Spending time in quarantine has allowed her to hone in on hobbies such as cooking. (Staff Photo by Addison Aloian)

While quarantine has allowed me to tap into many hobbies I never had time to explore previously, my favorite is cooking. I’ve used my extensive free time to get creative in the kitchen, curating all kinds of dishes that I never would have had the chance to make during a busy college semester.

My favorite? Sweet potato gnocchi. Something about the combination of the crispy texture with the smooth flavor of the sweet potato just makes each piece melt in your mouth perfectly.

Although a bit time-consuming, the recipe is unbelievably easy — with only four main ingredients — and so much fun to make. I can guarantee that you’ll be proud of yourself by the time you finish creating this delicacy.

Without further ado, the best meal you’ll ever make:

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Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1 egg (3 tablespoons of liquid carton egg)
  • 2 cups of flour plus some for kneading
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil or butter
  • 2 leaves of sage
  • Optional: paprika to sprinkle for extra flavor
  • Aluminum foil
  • Parchment paper

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Prick the sweet potato all over with a fork, sprinkle with salt, pepper and drizzle in olive oil, then cover with aluminum foil and place into the oven for ~40 minutes, adding or subtracting a few minutes depending on the size of the potato.
  3. Take the sweet potato out, allow it to cool for about five minutes, then peel the skin off.
  4. Place the sweet potato into a large mixing bowl, mash it and mix it together with the egg and your choice of grated cheese.
  5. After it’s mixed thoroughly, add in the flour, one cup at a time, and knead to create the dough. Add flour until the dough is no longer sticky, then form it into a ball.
  6. Lay out the dough on parchment paper and divide it evenly into 6 pieces, then take each piece and roll it out into a 1-inch wide rope. Divide the ropes in half if the pieces get too long.
  7. Slice the dough into small rectangular gnocchi pieces. If you feel like getting fancy, roll each individual piece over the back of a fork to create a cool corkscrew pattern. If you don’t want to cook all the pieces at once, you can freeze the pieces for up to a month and cook whenever you need a sweet potato fix.
  8. Boil around 8 pieces at a time and remove them once they start floating to the top of the water, which happens after about 30 seconds to a minute. Drain in a colander or put pieces aside on a paper towel to dry.
  9. Cut up the sage into small pieces, heat up the olive oil (or butter for a richer taste) over medium heat, then add in the bits of sage. When it’s bubbly, add in the gnocchi and stir gently in the oil, then leave the pieces sitting for a few minutes to brown and become crispy. Optional: I also like adding some smoked paprika to give it extra flavor.
  10. To finish, top with the grated cheese of your choice and enjoy the most delicious meal a college student could ever make!

Email Addison Aloian at [email protected]

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