Little potato dumplings, or canederli dumplings made from stale bread, are served with speck, the signature cured pork of the Trento region in Northeastern Italy. Smoky meat and starchy dumplings make for a rich dish, but the freshness of local traditional-method sparkling wines will cut right through. The creamy texture of a riserva, which undergoes at least 36 months of bottle maturation on the lees during secondary fermentation, will stand up to the deliciously salty, starchy meal.
- 1½ pounds Russet potatoes
- Kosher salt
- 1 large egg, lightly whisked
- 1¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 ounces speck or bacon, minced
- Fresh-ground black pepper
Peel potatoes. Boil over medium heat in large pot of well-salted water until fork tender, 30–35 minutes. Reserve 1 cup cooking water, and drain potatoes. Let sit until cool enough to handle.
Use ricer to mash potatoes, adding cooking water in small increments if needed to make mashed potatoes smooth and creamy. Stir in egg. Knead in ¾ cup flour. Knead in remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed to make smooth, stretchy, slightly sticky dough.
Form dough into ball, wrap ball in plastic and refrigerate at least 1 hour, and up to 24 hours.
Break off a handful of dough. Rewrap rest of ball and return to fridge. On floured surface, roll handful into even, 1-inch-thick rope. Cut rope into 1-inch-long pieces and transfer to parchment in single layer, not touching. Repeat until you’ve shaped all dough.
Bring well-salted water to boil. Add gnocchi. Boil until it floats, about 1 minute.
Meanwhile, in large skillet over medium heat, warm olive oil. Add speck and cook, stirring, until starting to brown.
When gnocchi is cooked, reserve 1 cup cooking water and drain. Transfer gnocchi to skillet. Stir to coat gnocchi in speck fat, thinning with cooking water if needed. Serve immediately, topped with black pepper to taste. Serves 4.
Rotari 2011 40 Anni Special Limited Edition Riserva Chardonnay (Trento). Packed in a festive gold-wrapped bottle in honor of the firm’s 40th anniversary, this 100% Chardonnay opens with delicate scents of white stone fruit, bread crust and a hint of toast. The elegant palate offers yellow apple, pear, citrus zest and hazelnut alongside fresh acidity and a refined perlage.