Homemade Kale Gnocchi

Discover how to make Alex Head's take on this comforting and classic dish. A homemade Gnocchi, zero waste kale stem pesto, crushed pumpkin seeds and pea shoots

By Alex Head

Homemade Kale Gnocchi
30 mins preparation, 60 mins cooking time

Gnocchi from scratch is probably one of those things you haven’t got round to before, but this Kale Gnocchi Recipe is the perfect cathartic thing to get stuck into. It’s also a fun one to get your kids involved in.

Italian , Kids , Vegetarian , Medium , Spring , Dinner


1kg Desiree potatoes
1 small punnet of pea shoots
2 small eggs
½ tsp fine sea salt
150g plain flour
Rock salt, for baking potatoes
25g toasted pumpkin seeds, roughly chopped
1 small bunch of green kale, leaves removed and stalks set aside
1 bunch flat leaf parsley
1 bunch basil
50g parmesan or pecorino, half finely grated and half into shavings for garnish
2 garlic cloves
50g toasted sunflower seeds
50-100ml good quality olive oil
1 lemon, zest and juice



For the Gnocchi

Preheat the oven to 170C fan, Cover the base of a roasting tin with a few handfuls of rock salt


Prick the potatoes all over with a fork and lay straight onto the salt in the tray


Bake until completely soft through, this may take about an hour


While the potatoes are baking, make the pesto. (recipe below)


Once the potatoes are cooked, allow to cool slightly before peeling away the skin, and setting the cooked potato in a bowl to the side


Use a potato ricer or fine sieve to create a very smooth mash, this is best done while the potatoes are still hot


Clean down and dry a kitchen surface before sprinkling 250g of the flour and the fine sea salt directly onto the surface


Tip the mashed potatoes onto the flour, create a dip in the centre for the eggs and begin to mix together using your hands


Add more flour if you need but stop as soon as the dough is smooth and soft


Divide the mix equally into four with a knife. Roll out each piece of dough into a long sausage and cut into small pieces, the shape doesn’t matter, as long as they are all a similar size so that they cook evenly


Bring a large pan and a small pan up to the boil, season both pans of water heavily with sea salt


Blanch the Kale leaves in the small pan and drop the gnocchi into the other, lift out carefully when the gnocchi rises to the surface of the water


If pan frying, cool the gnocchi down in iced water, heat up a non-stick pan and fry in a little oil or butter until golden. If not pan frying, tip the gnocchi straight into a bowl from the hot water, toss in the pesto and kale leaves and check the seasoning


For the Pesto

Finely chop the kale stems and add to a blender with all other ingredients except the oil


Blend until pesto consistency, with texture, pouring the oil in slowly as you blend


Set aside in the fridge until you need to use it

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