Gnocchi with Brown Butter Sauce, Crispy Sage and Duck Breast

Gnocchi is real comfort food for the soul. Combine it with a super easy brown butter sauce and you have a blissful supper.



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About this Recipe

By: Amanda Higgins

I love making my own gnocchi. There is something quite magical about a dumpling made with a humble potato. This is a gluten free version, so does need gentle hands.

Gnocchi originates in Northern Italy, where the colder climate was better for growing potatoes than grain. … Essentially, gnocchi are a form of dumplings, not exclusive to Italy. But their light, airy texture and full potato flavour makes them a unique pasta with a long history in classic European cuisine.

Combine this with any sauce, vegetarian or a meaty ragu and you have dinner made for the gods.


  • 800g potato
  • 300g all-purpose gluten free flour or normal wheat flour
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Extra rice flour for dusting or normal wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
  • 3 garlic cloves grated
  • 10-12 sage leaves torn or chopped into pieces
  • 8 heads of long stemmed broccoli chopped up – stalks chopped off as only using the heads of the broccoli.
  • 300g butter
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • grated parmesan cheese for garnish
  • Optional – two duck breasts cooked and sliced
  • Crispy potato skins – olive oil, salt and smoked paprika.

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

Heat oven to 200ºC. Rinse and prick the potatoes, bake them until they are cooked, approximately 45 minutes.

Scoop all the flesh out of the potato skins into a bowl and mash. Reserve the skins for a treat later.

A potato ricer is an amazing tool to have for making smooth mash and gnocchi. I would highly recommend it. I put the potato mash through the ricer twice, too ensure a smooth fluffy gnocchi. You can mash it with a potato masher if all else fails but make sure it is really lump free.

Step 2

Add the flour, egg, salt, pepper and nutmeg to the mash and mix with a fork until combined and then with your hands to form a light dough. Be careful not to over work the mash/dough as it will release starch and make a heavy gnocchi.

Flour a surface with whichever flour you are using and take small handfuls of the dough, roll them into sausages about 2cm in diameter. Chop them into bite size pieces and lay them on a floured tray. The dough will make enough gnocchi for 4 people as a main course.

Step 3

To cook the gnocchi put a large pot of salted water onto boil. Add small portions of gnocchi to the water at a time. The gnocchi is ready when it rises to the surface of the water. Use a slotted spoon to remove them. I placed all the gnocchi into a large frying pan.


Step 4

To make the brown butter sauce: add all the butter to a frying pan and allow it to melt and bubble, add the garlic, sage, chilli and broccoli. Continue to fry the butter. The butter will start to go brown and the herbs and broccoli will become crispy. Don’t let it burn, remove from the heat and add the lemon juice – which will splatter and sizzle. Season to taste.

Step 5

Pour this over the cooked gnocchi and sauté the whole lot in the pan for a few minutes to reheat the gnocchi.

Sprinkle with plenty of parmesan cheese just before serving.

I added a few slices of duck breast to the dish for a small protein kick. (optional)

While the oven is still warm from baking the potatoes, slice the potato skins in half after having scooped out all their flesh and lay them on a baking tray. Rub them with olive oil, salt and a good sprinkle of smoked paprika. Bake them for 10-15 minutes until crispy. These make a delicious pre-dinner snack for the starving masses and you won’t waste any of the goodness of the potato. Great for dunking into a dip. Definitely not banting friendly!


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