Njoki

It’s tradition in Croatia to eat Pašticada sa domaćim njokama (pot roast with home made potato gnocchi), and the njoki/gnocchi can be made in advance. They’re not at all tricky to make, and are delicious covered in thick rich gravy.

Take some fluffy potatoes (I’ve got Maris Piper) and place them into a pan of cold salted water, and bring to the boil.

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Once boiled, the skins of the potatoes turn really soft, and can be peeled off. Unless you’ve got asbestos fingers you might find it easier to use a sharp knife.

Now, prepare the work surface with flour and rice the potatoes. Ricing instead of mashing helps the moisture in the potatoes evaporate. If you think the potatoes are soggy you could pop them into an oven for a couple of minutes after peeling. We used strong bread flour – apparently the protein in the flour helps to soak up moisture.

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Make a well in the potatoes and add an egg, some salt, and a generous knob of butter.

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Bring all the ingredients together to form a dough, but don’t over-work them. You’re not baking bread, so definitely don’t go kneading it!

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Roll the dough into even portions, and then take each portion and roll it into long sausages. Chop each sausage evenly.

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Some recipes recommend pressing each gnocchi against a fork, but rolling out against a grater adds a better looking finish, and helps the gnocchi soak in and hold a generous amount of the rich gravy.

Press the gnocchi flat against the grater, and push downwards so that it flattens out against the grater. Then, roll it around to form the gnocchi shape.

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