Polish gnocchi, otherwise known as Kopytka and how to deal with a construction site

  First of all I would like to say  big THANK YOU to all of you. Two weeks ago, right after I posted Polish Dumplings, I was looking at my stats- eghm I guess we all do that right?- and I couldn’t believe…only on Wednesday 260 views, and then on Thursday 459!!! So once again thank you All. Every sign of interest and sympathy reminds me that my little blog is here because of you and for you. And now back to reality. Last weekend I woke up on Saturday morning at 8 a.m. and realized that the construction site, right next to my house, was on…On Saturday morning…For the last year and a half those guys come every morning around 6.45 a.m. and the misery of my house starts. Believe me I checked if there was anything we could do about it, and no. I guess you can always say, if you cannot fight the enemy, try at least to like it. But frankly there is nothing you could possibly like about this noise in your bedroom, and the music they listen to! Since I got a bit of cold, I cannot do any sport to release my frustration. However… today’s dish requires lots of kneading, and I figured it would be a perfect way of letting it out 😀 Polish gnocchi is a comfort food in my country. It’s a traditional dish, made out of the potatoes and the flour. It doesn’t look fancy but it’s really tasty, if you know how to prepare the dough. And believe me it’s important. I remember when I was little my mom used to make them, but they were, well, kind of chewy…I asked my grandma why her gnocchi were always so soft, and mouth-melting. She told me the secret lies in the potatoes- or rather the proportion between the potatoes and the flour.

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So remember to use two thirds of potatoes and one third of flour. Of course if you feel like you need more flour add some, but the dough has to be tender. After all this kneading involved, it was like a relief after the noisy morning. So try it yourself. You might actually like it- lots of fun, especially if you have little assistants around. Also I have to explain that this time most of the pictures were taken by my boyfriend. I think my kitchen was photographed in great details, whether I needed it or not and regardless of the main focus on the gnocchi 😀 I could tell, despite of all complaints I had to listen to, he had fun! I tried to show you the whole process of kneading and making the gnocchi, so don’t be scared by the number of photos. I hope you will find it useful- especially because the consistency of this dough is a little bit different, than the one for dumplings or pasta. These gnocchi are perfect with any type of sauce- mushroom, meat- like gulash, but even with some fried onions and butter they will make your dinner time!

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Ingredients

Makes 4 servings, preparation time- around 45 min, cooking time- 5-6 min each tranche

  1. 10 big potatoes- around 800 g
  2. 250 g of flour- have some aside too
  3. 150 g of cottage cheese- white cheese
  4. 2 eggs
  5. pinch of salt
  6. 2 medium sized onions
  7. some butter or olive oil if you prefer

Directions

In advance boil the potatoes and crush them once ready.

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On a working surface place together  the potatoes, flour, cheese and the eggs. Add pinch of salt and …

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start kneading! Look at these pictures below. It looks a bit messy at the beginning. Just keep kneading and add some more flour if the dough is still very sticky. Try to combine all ingredients as much as possible.

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As you can see after about 10 min I added some flour.

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After about 25 min of kneading you can see the final effect above. Form a sort of big ball and cut it in two halves like below. Also this is a good time to wash your hands 🙂

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Now we can start making the gnocchi. From one half of the dough you should be able to form another two smaller balls. Roll them in your hands- using your palms and keep rolling them into a rope shape, about 2-3 cm thick, like on the pictures below.

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When the gnocchi rope is ready start cutting it into smaller pieces-about 2 cm wide each.

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You can leave the gnocchi as they are on the picture above, but what I did is the more traditional way- below I’ showing you this. I take each gnocchi separately and roll it with a bit of flour in my hands. It’s because in my region, they are called not kopytka, like in the rest of the country, but paluszki– which literally means “little fingers” 🙂 So we make them they way they look more like fingers.

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As you can see I made the supply for the whole army!

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In a large pot boil some water. Remember to add some salt. Add the gnocchi once the water is boiling and cook them until they start to float. Then cook for another 2-3 min.

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Serve the gnocchi immediately with fried onions and melted butter. I placed them in a big iron skilled and fried with olive oil and the onions for another 5-10 min. You can also freeze them- these are perfect for freezing- simply once the gnocchi are ready, place them on a baking sheet, or any other surface you wish to use for this purpose, dust with flour and place in the freezer uncovered. When the gnocchi are frozen, just drop them into a plastic bag. You can cook them directly like the fresh gnocchi, just wait another minute or so. By the way, you can do exactly the same thing with the dumplings.

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Enjoy 🙂

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38 thoughts on “Polish gnocchi, otherwise known as Kopytka and how to deal with a construction site

  1. Hi. I buy ready made kopytka in a local polish shop. I usually only buy about 3 or 4. because I’m afraid they will lose their texture if I don’t eat them that day, or the next day.
    How long could I leave them for in the fridge, and is it okay to freeze them?

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  2. How funny – I’ve made the German version of these a few weeks back but never got round to write it up! Ours are called Bubaspitzle, which is kind of rude, as it means ‘boy’s tails’…
    Must get round to post the recipe someday, for comparison’s sake 🙂

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  3. Pingback: German Beef Rouladen with Mushroom Gravy . $10.00 | Frugal Hausfrau

  4. How interesting, I never thought about Gnocchi but from Italy – but of course, every European kitchen has some potato knederli, gnocchi, Knödel recipe. I am intrigued by the Cottage cheese addition: is it similar to the Russian Cottage cheese? I have found that one in a shop here. Nicole xx

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  5. Gnocchi is such an ambitious dish to make it home, I am just afraid of making a mess with the dough, thank you for sharing such detailed pictures and instructions (thank you BF!!), looks like a wonderful way to spend a cold Saturday afternoon 🙂

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    • I have to survive the winter Naina, then you can be sure you will see me in Denmark 😀 if I survive winter of course! And thank you for saying the pictures are great- my boyfriend will be happy- cause he was really complaining and asking “can I go now?” like every 5 minutes 😀 oh by the way let me know if you would like to do the challenge- I have an idea 😉

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  6. You are so sweet…I am certain that you will have many more views to come Marta. 🙂 Wow yum, what a great recipe. Do you think I could add some butternut squash into the dough? Would that be very un-Polish? By the way, I love your small cooking pot in the first potato photos! 😉

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    • Haha maybe it does, but frankly I have never seen my mom or my grandma using a food processor. I guess that’s why I never use mine either- I wouldn’t dare, but who knows, maybe it could work out 🙂

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  7. These look wonderful and not too difficult. Wonderful winter comfort food. What does kopytka mean in Polish? In Russian it is a horse’s hoof! I can imagine your frustration with the work outside…. especially on a Saturday! Good luck

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