Potato Gnocchi with Spicy Tomato Sauce

Eggs in purgatory Tomato and basil soup


  • 4 russet potatoes (about 1 ½ pounds total)
  • 2 cups coarse sea salt, plus more for salting the pasta cooking water
  • 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 tablespoon fine sea salt, plus more for seasoning the sauce
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for finishing
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 (14 ounce) can whole Mutti® Whole Peeled Tomatoes

How to prepare

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.  

Sprinkle about ½ cup of the coarse sea salt in the bottom of a baking dish just large enough to hold the potatoes. Place the potatoes on the salt, then cover them with the remaining coarse salt. Bake in the pre-heated oven until easily pierced with a paring knife, about 40 minutes. Set aside to cool. Discard the salt. 

Once the potatoes are cool enough to handle, peel them and mash them with a potato ricer. (You can use a fork, just be sure to crush them thoroughly and do not leave any large chunks.) On a work surface, spread the potatoes into a square about 10 by 10 inches. 

In a bowl, combine 2 cups flour and 1 tablespoon fine sea salt. Sprinkle the flour mixture evenly over the potatoes.  

Knead the potato mixture (use a bench scraper to help you get started, if necessary) until the mixture is uniform and forms a soft, slightly sticky dough. If the dough is too sticky, add the remaining 1 cup flour in small amounts.  Note: the less flour you add, the lighter your gnocchi will be. 

With a knife, cut the dough into equal-size pieces roughly the size of an egg. Working one at a time, roll the pieces into ropes about ¾ inch wide. Cut the ropes into 1-inch pieces. 

Pick up one piece of the dough, roll it over the back of a fork, and let it drop onto the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough. The resulting gnocchi should be slightly curved with the grooves that will capture the sauce. Dust the gnocchi lightly with flour and set aside.  

Place the olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until the garlic is fragrant and just light brown. Add the Mutti® tomatoes and their juices to the pan, crushing them by hand as you do. Season to taste with salt. Simmer the sauce until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the Gnocchi. When the water is boiling, salt it as salty as the sea, then add the gnocchi. Cook the gnocchi until they rise to the top of the water, about 1 minute. As they are finished cooking, remove them to a colander with a slotted spoon. 

Spread a small amount of the tomato sauce on the bottom of a serving dish. Add the drained gnocchi, then spoon the remaining sauce on top. Toss to combine. Drizzle with a little olive oil and serve immediately.  

Recipe Adapted From ”How to Eataly: A Guide to Cooking, Buying, and Eating Italian Food” by Oscar Farinetti