Chive gnocchi with smoked cream sauce & leeks

A comforting, creamy vegetarian dish for a chilly evening. The charred leeks and spices give this recipe a great depth of flavour

  • Prep:45 mins
    Cook:2 hrs
  • Serves 6
  • A challenge

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 828
  • fat 59g
  • saturates 32g
  • carbs 54g
  • sugars 5g
  • fibre 7g
  • protein 16g
  • salt 0.8g


  • 1.2kg large Maris Piper potatoes
  • 125g ‘00’ pasta flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 90g Parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), finely grated, plus extra to serve
  • small pack chives, snipped
  • good grating nutmeg
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 3 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 50g butter, diced
  • 4 leeks, trimmed and sliced into rounds
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 300ml pot double cream
  • 75g butter, cut into cubes
  • pinch cayenne pepper, plus extra to serve
  • pinch of smoked sea salt, plus extra to serve
  • juice 1 lemon


  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Put the potatoes on a baking tray and bake for 1 hr 15 mins. Leave to cool slightly, then halve and scrape out the middles with a spoon. Mash the potato with a ricer (or a vegetable masher, then push through a sieve into a large bowl ). Mix in the flour, Parmesan, most of the chives (keep a few to garnish), nutmeg, egg and egg yolks and some seasoning, then knead briefly on a lightly floured surface until you get a smooth dough.

  2. Divide the dough into four pieces, then use your hands to roll one piece into a long, even sausage shape. Cut into 17 equal pieces, then lightly push and roll each piece with a fork – this will shape the gnocchi and give it the traditional indentations. Divide the finished gnocchi between two trays lined with baking parchment, then repeat with the rest of the dough. Cover with cling film and chill in the fridge until needed.

  3. Put the sliced leeks in a large, non-stick frying pan with the oil, turn the heat to high and fry for 8 mins, shaking the pan occasionally until the leeks are just cooked, with a charred edge, then turn off the heat.

  4. For the sauce, pour the cream into a large saucepan and simmer over a medium heat for 12 mins until reduced by half. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cook the gnocchi in batches in the water until they float (this will take only a few mins, so keep your eye on them). Transfer to lightly oiled trays using a slotted spoon and leave to steam-dry.

  5. Slowly whisk the butter into the cream, waiting until one cube has melted and combined before adding the next. Once all the butter has been incorporated, add the cayenne pepper, smoked salt and lemon juice, adjusting to taste. Set aside to keep warm.

  6. To finish the gnocchi, heat a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add 1 tbsp oil and a third of the butter, then fry the gnocchi in three batches, adding more oil and butter between each batch, until they have a golden brown crispy exterior. Put the gnocchi in serving bowls with the charred leeks, spoon the sauce over the top and finish with the reserved chives, some grated Parmesan and a pinch of smoked salt and cayenne pepper, if you like.

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