Queue the inappropriate and immature giggles.
Gnudi – it stands in a long line of my favorite words that are fun to say, e.g.: Worcestershire, wonky, zeitgeist, lackadaisical, gnudi. But don’t think I’m making this just because it sounds funny. It’s my new favorite thing. Gnudi are like gnocchi, only better. We’re skipping the whole potato middle man and creating dumplings simply made of cheese. Light and lemony, these dumplings are made with ricotta, fontina, and parmesan cheeses. The dumplings take a quick dip in boiling water, then they take a swim in melted butter until they each form a golden brown crust. Then they are tossed with some basil pesto, green beans, and fresh pea shoots. This Cheesy Gnudi with Green Beans and Pesto is the epitome of spring.
- 1 pound whole-milk ricotta cheese
- 1 cup shredded fontina cheese
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 lemon, zested
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
- 8 ounces green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
- ½ stick unsalted butter
- ½ cup basil pesto
- 2 cups fresh pea shoots
- Stir together the ricotta, fontina, Parmesan, lemon zest, eggs, salt, and pepper in a large bowl to combine. Slowly add the flour and stir until the dough comes together.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a gentle boil. Using a teaspoon measure, form the dough into small balls and roll in extra flour, dusting off any excess. Working in batches, add the gnudi to the boiling water and cook for about 2 minutes, until they float to the top. Once they float to the top, cook for another minute. Using a slotted spoon, drain the gnudi and transfer to a sheet tray.
- Bring the water back to a boil and add the green beans. Cook for about 2 minutes, until crisp-tender. Transfer the green beans to a bowl of ice water. Drain the beans and pat dry.
- Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, add the gnudi to the pan and cook for 1 to 2 minutes per side, until golden brown. Continue cooking the gnudi, adding more butter as needed. Stir in the green beans and pesto and transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with the pea shoots.