4 russet or baking potatoes1 large egg, beaten well (55 grams)4 ounces all-purpose flour (115 grams)1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil1 small yellow onion, chopped3 ½ cups canned whole San Marzano tomatoes, peeled8 ounces fresh mozzarella, (small balls called ciliegine)Torn basil leaves½ cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano
Preheat an oven to 400F. Pierce the potatoes many times with the tines of a fork. Bake the potatoes until they are tender and can be easily pierced with a fork. Remove from the oven and while still hot, with a potato ricer, rice the potatoes onto a baking sheet. Spread the potatoes to dry them out and let cool.
Measure 450 grams of cooled potatoes. Beat the egg with a fork until well beaten. Using the fork, combine the riced potatoes and egg. Sprinkle the flour and salt over the top and with the fork, bring the dough together. Do not work the dough too much. Knead lightly for 30 seconds.
Divide the dough into 8 pieces and roll each piece on a very lightly floured surface into a 12-inch long rope ½-inch diameter. With a knife, cut the rope into ¾-inch pieces.
Holding the fork cut-side down with the tines away from you, flatten the gnocchi onto the back of the fork and roll the gnocchi off and away from you forming a curl. Place the gnocchi on a baking sheet covered with a linen towel dusted with flour. Set aside in a dry place.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Season well with salt. Boil the gnocchi until they float to the top, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the gnocchi with a slotted spoon and place on a baking sheet to cool while you make the sauce.
In the meantime, warm the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 20 seconds. Add the whole tomatoes and with a spoon, crush the tomatoes to release the juice and pulp. Simmer 10 minutes. Add half of the basil and simmer for 1 minute. Season with salt.
Add the gnocchi to the sauce and stir until coated. Remove the frying pan from the heat and add the mozzarella, folding everything gently and very quickly to coat the cheese. Transfer to a baking dish and sprinkle with Parmigiano. Bake for 10 minutes and serve immediately garnished with basil.
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