Ricotta & Swiss Chard Dumplings

My friend Beth Kracklauer is an editor at Saveur, my hands-down favorite cooking magazine. For an article on nutmeg, she managed to snag this recipe from Al di La, my hands-down favorite Italian restaurant in Brooklyn. I made this as part of my New Year's Eve dinner feast and admittedly, it was a lot of work. But boy was it worth it! These gnudi are light as a feather and oh so elegant.  

Malfatti (Ricotta & Swiss Chard Dumplings)
(Serves 4-6)

- 1 lb. ricotta
- 1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 4 bunches Swiss chard (about 4 lbs.), stemmed
- 16 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup flour, plus more
- 1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 4 egg yolks
- 1 egg
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 24 sage leaves
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

1. Put ricotta in a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a bowl and let drain overnight in refrigerator. Measure 1 1/4 cups drained ricotta and reserve any remaining ricotta for another use.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add chard; cook until soft, 3–4 minutes. Drain chard and let cool. Squeeze chard with your hands to expel liquid. Transfer chard to center of a tea towel, bring up edges, and squeeze to expel remaining liquid. (Alternatively, working in batches, put chard in a potato ricer and squeeze to expel liquid.) Transfer chard to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer chard to a large bowl along with drained ricotta, 1 tsp. salt, 8 tbsp. butter, flour, nutmeg, egg yolks, and egg. Season with pepper and mix until smooth. (Test 1 dumpling: Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Measure out 1 tbsp. of mixture, roll in flour, and boil until the dumpling floats. If dumpling falls apart, stir 1/4 cup more flour into mixture.)

3. Using a spoon, divide mixture into about 40 portions. Working with 1 portion at a time, use 2 spoons to shape portion into an oval and dust with flour. Transfer dumplings to a lightly floured baking sheet and repeat with remaining portions. (If not cooking immediately, cover and freeze malfatti for up to 6 months.)

4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add dumplings; cook until dumplings float, 1–2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer dumplings to a baking sheet. Meanwhile, heat remaining butter in a 10" skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add sage and cook until leaves are crisp, 1 minute. Divide dumplings between 6 serving plates, drizzle with sage butter, and garnish with more Parmesan and nutmeg, if you like.

See more great recipes at www.Saveur.com