Some recipes on this newsletter have a story: some kind of personal anecdote, or a historical basis. This is not one of those recipes. What this recipe is though, is deeply delicious. This is a true case of “the recipe you’re about to read is something that I just wanted to make and eat.” Tender, vibrantly-colored gnocchi in a tangy horsey sauce with a metric ton of chopped dill. I bet you’ll want to make and eat it too.
Gnocchi is delightfully easy to make, requiring just a few ingredients and very little in the way of technique. Though there are a few tips that will make this even easier and more successful. First off, really roast those beets. You want tender little dirt jewels. They should be very tender and the skin should slip off with little effort. The long roast will caramelize all those beety sugars and the end result will be top-notch. I would highly recommend roasting your beets and potatoes the night before: Peel the still-warm beets, and throw them in the fridge overnight. Not only is it easier to make the dough with cold ingredients, but dinner will come together super fast the next day.
I always have a box of latex or nitrile gloves in my kitchen for projects like this. The beets will stain your hands, so throw a pair on before you start. You’ll also want to have a stack of parchment-lined sheet pans on standby when you’re forming and cutting the gnocchi. As you cut the gnocchi, put them on the trays, and don’t let them touch. I used three sheet pans for this recipe. The parchment makes transferring them to the simmering water easier and ensures you won’t end up with one big rat king of gnocchi.
The sauce here has wine and butter, so I’m calling it a beurre blanc. When I was developing this recipe, my first sauce was simply browned butter and fresh horseradish. It was an undeniable flop. It was such a flop, Andrew was skeptical that I should even continue on this endeavor. But the next afternoon, when confronted with a gorge platter of beet gnocchi doused in this version of the sauce, Andrew ate his words, along with his gnocchi.