Blueberry Dumplings

_DSC0320Serves 4
Apricot dumplings are a traditional Austrian dish that we have converted into blueberry dumplings, given that the berries are easier to harvest here in Northern California. The trick is to use large blueberries and firm-cooking potatoes that will soak up less flour. Don’t overwork the dough, and if you want to read a more detailed step-by-step guide, take a peek at this witty article by Felicity Cloake and published in The Guardian explaining how to get the perfect gnocchi dough. It is not too dissimilar to ours and will definitely give you the lay of the land when it comes to potato gnocchi in Northern Italy. Enjoy my favorite dumplings!
1 lb Yukon gold potatoes
1 egg
Approx. 1 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups large blueberries, raw or frozen
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp bread crumbs
2 Tbsp butter
Cook potatoes in salted water until just soft, approximately 10-15 minutes. Do not overcook.
Peel them quickly and press the potatoes through a ricer using the smallest holes. This works best while the potatoes are still hot. Spread over a silpat mat or clear worktable. Let cool.
Heat a large pot of water.
Preheat the oven to 325F.
Sprinkle half of the flour over the potatoes, add the egg and start to blend everything together with your hands, adding flour as necessary – but trying to put as little as you must. Work quickly as the too much handling of the dough will result in harder dough.
You will end up with a soft dough, that doesn’t feel sticky and can also easily be shaped.
This would be a good moment to check if the dough holds together. So take a little ball of dough and see how it does when boiled. It will pop to the surface. You might need to add more flour if all you see is a cloudy pot of water.
If you are satisfied with the dough’s performance, work in batches starting with a quarter of the dough. Roll out dough on a floured surface to a 1/4 inch thickness. Cut off a small square and roll it around blueberry into a small ball. Put aside on to a floured surface. Continue until all the dough and all the blueberries are used up.
While you roll the rest of the blueberries, you can start boiling the dumplings. Working with a few at a time – enough to cover the bottom of the pan – cook them in boiling water until they pop to the surface. Let them cook for 2 minutes while they are on the surface and then scoop them out with a slotted spoon. Set aside in a oven-safe dish and keep warm in the oven.
When all dumplings are cooked, mix sugar with cinnamon and sprinkle over dumplings. Sprinkle breadcrumbs and also cover the surface with tiny dollops of butter.
Heat in the oven until golden brown and serve immediately. They are also good cold, but none will be left.

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