If you haven’t tried potato gnocchi before you are in for a treat. Contrary to popular belief they aren’t heavy and stodgy. In fact they are quite light and fluffy. Gnocchi can usually be found in the supermarket alongside fresh pasta. You will get at least 6 good-sized portions from this recipe and any that you don’t eat will keep in the fridge for a couple of days. Alternatively, you can freeze any leftovers.
- 500g minced beef
- 600g potato gnocchi
- 200g grated mozzarella
- 200g diced lardons
- Handful of small mozzarella balls (optional)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 400g Tom chopped tomatoes
- 2-3 tsp Italian seasoning
- Few glugs Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- Salt and pepper
- Handful of basil, thinly sliced
- Olive oil
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
Heat a small amount of olive oil in a large pan, add the lardons, and fry until brown.
Add the garlic and fry for another minute or so whilst keeping a watchful eye. Add the minced beef and break up with a wooden spoon to avoid clumps. Keep stirring until the mince has brown.
Once the meat has browned, drain off any excess fat then add your Italian seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, tomato purée, a good pinch of salt, and a few grinds of fresh black pepper. Stir through and then add your chopped tomatoes.
Swill some water around the can, tip it into the pan, and stir. Leave to simmer for at least 30 minutes (longer if you have the time).
Once your Bolognese is made, bring another large pan of salted water to the boil and cook the gnocchi according to the instructions on the packet, usually around 4 minutes.
Drain the gnocchi and tip into a large ovenproof dish. Add the Bolognese along with the basil and stir until the gnocchi is evenly coated. Top with the grated mozzarella and the mozzarella balls (if using) and cook in the oven until the cheese is nicely melted and gooey.
Mark’s Top Tip
Basil can bruise very easily and discolour so in order to maintain its vibrancy, always chop it just before using. Place the basil leaves on top of each other, roll up into a small cigarette shape, and thinly slice from the end using a sharp knife.