Indy Power: Chickpea Gnocchi Pomodoro - a delicious twist on the classic
Chickpeas and buckwheat flour make for a gluten-free Italian feast
Chickpea Gnocchi Pomodoro
This is such a delicious twist on the classic.
Serves 4. Gluten free & vegan
For the sauce:
3 tbsp olive oil
1 white onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
Small handful fresh basil, chopped
For the gnocchi:
2 tins chickpeas (480g drained weight)
100g buckwheat flour
First, make the sauce. Add the olive oil and onion to a pan on medium heat and cook for about 5 mins until soft and sweet. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 mins.
While they cook, drain and rinse the chickpeas. Then remove their skins.
Add the chopped tomatoes to the pan. Season with salt and pepper, bring it to a gentle simmer and let it reduce for about 20 mins. Stir in the chopped basil.
While it simmers, make the gnocchi. Blend the chickpeas in a food processor with a pinch of sea salt until smooth, then transfer to a bowl. Add the water and flour and knead the mixture until you have a ball of pillowy dough. It should be a little sticky but easy to handle; add a little more water or flour if needed.
Roll the dough into cigar shapes. Then cut them into ¾-inch pieces - this recipe works better if they are a little smaller than regular gnocchi. Use your hands to round each one, then roll a fork over each piece to mark them.
Add the gnocchi to boiling water in batches, cooking until they bounce to the top, about 2-3 mins. Lift them out and add them to the pan with the sauce. Stir through and serve.
I find the easiest way to remove chickpea skins is to add them to a large mixing bowl in the sink. Fill it with cold water and vigorously rub them together under the water. Pour off most of the water - the skins should float to the top and pour out while the chickpeas stay at the bottom. Fill up the bowl again and repeat three or four times until almost all of the skins are gone, then drain the chickpeas through a colander. Of course, you can pop the chickpeas out of their skins one by one but I think this is faster.
Gnocchi in a perfect tomato sauce is a classic and it's my favourite way to have it. However, I also love pan-fried gnocchi. A few years ago, when I first started this column, one of the early recipes I shared was a pan-fried sweet potato gnocchi with lemon zest and sage - it tastes as dreamy as it sounds. I still love that recipe and this chickpea gnocchi works really well in place of the sweet potato. While the gnocchi is boiling, cook some minced garlic, pine nuts and chopped sage in olive oil until golden. Then add in the cooked gnocchi and fry for a few minutes until crisp. Serve with lemon zest, salt and pepper sprinkled on top. Heaven.
Another recipe that requires removing chickpea skins is my Next Level Hummus — search for it on my website, thelittlegreenspoon.com and prepare to be hooked forever. It’s the best hummus you’ll ever make