Ricotta & Mint Gnocchi with a Creamy Pea Sauce & Crispy Pancetta

Serves 4

  • For the gnocchi:
  • 400g Ricotta 
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan, freshly grated
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 5 tbsp fine semolina
  • 60g chiffonaded fresh mint leaves
  • sea salt
  • black pepper, freshly ground

For the sauce:

  • 200ml cream
  • 40g Pecorino, grated
  • 50g butter
  • 20g mint, chiffonaded (finely sliced)
  • 250g pancetta 
  • 200g fresh peas

1. In a bowl, mash the Ricotta with the Parmesan, egg, semolina, mint, salt and pepper. Mix well to form  a paste.

2. On a lightly oiled surface, roll the paste into thin cylindrical shapes, about 1cm in diameter, then cut with a sharp knife into balls or pieces about 2cm long.

3. Bring a large pan of water to the boil and lower the dumplings in, one at a time, on a slotted spoon. Allow them to simmer for about 2 min, or until they rise to the surface. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain thoroughly.

4. Gently bring the cream to the boil till it has reduced and thickened, add the grated cheese.

5. In a small saucepan melt the butter with the chiffonaded mint leaves.

6.Fry off the pancetta in a hot pan until crispy and golden.

7. Blanch the peas in boiling water and drain well through a colander, add to the cream. Season the cream well with salt and pepper.

8.Pour the cream over the gnocchi and drizzle over the mint butter.

Merlot complements this dish.

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Recipe Diane Heierli • Photography C&D Heierli