SPINACH AND CHEESE DUMPLINGS
Preparation - Medium-difficult
Malfatti, badly made or ill-shaped, because these "gnocchi" are made of the filling for a ravioli, and therefore not enclosed and defined by the dough. Delicious nonetheless, delicate in flavor. Serve with a mixture of melted butter and Parmesan cheese, or a very light creamy tomato sauce.
Large, covered pot to steam spinach, mixing bowl, slotted spoon.
- 4 lbs fresh spinach, washed with stems removed
- 2 cups ricotta cheese, mashed
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper
- 1/4 t nutmeg
- 1/2 cup flour
- 5 T butter, melted
NOTE: Can also be served with a simple tomato sauce to which you have added 1/2 a cup of heavy cream.
- Steam the spinach in a covered saucepan. The water clinging to the leaves is sufficient to cook the spinach stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon until very tender. Add a few drops of water if needed.Place in a sieve and drain thoroughly. Use your hands to remove us much moisture as possible from the spinach.
- Place on paper towel, dryness essential to the success of the malfatti.
- Once satisfied that the spinach is dry enough, chop very fine.
- Place ricotta in a large bowl and mash with a fork or potato ricer.
- Stir in the eggs, nutmeg, salt, pepper to taste, 1/2 a cup of Parmesan and finally the spinach combining all thoroughly.
- Form into small balls about the size of a walnut.Place flour on a flat surface and roll the malfatti till covered.
- Meanwhile bring a pot of water to the boil.
- Lower heat so that water is at a bare simmer, bubbling very lightly.
- Carefully drop a few malfatti in at a time.Remove as soon as they rise to the surface, which they will do very quickly.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a lightly buttered dish or casserole placed in a warm oven with the door open so they do not continue to cook.
- Pour the melted butter over the malfatti and sprinkle with the rest of the Parmesan.
- Serve immediately.