In Trentino cuisine, strangolapreti is gnocchi made of stale bread, spinach, eggs, and Trentino grana cheese, served with melted butter and sage.
The cuisine of Trentino presents a culinary tradition that is the result of the influences of Venetian and South Tyrolean cuisine, characterized by gastronomic products of Austrian culture. It is also influenced by the particular nature linked to the historical and geographical isolation of the Alpine valleys. A unifying characteristic is the traditional poverty of typical dishes, and another is the presence of products and raw materials for the cuisine that characterize the area: potatoes, apples, corn, dairy products, spirits, and spirits.
500 g fresh spinach, cleaned, or 300 g frozen spinach
2 slightly dry bread rolls (1 or 2 days old, left on the counter to dry out)
about 200-250 ml milk
grated parmesan and sage butter to taste.
How to make the Strangolapreti:
Cook the spinach. Meanwhile, chop the bread into a rough dice. Warm the milk till it simmers and pour onto the bread. The milk shouldn’t submerge the bread, but it’s okay even if it looks you used a bit too much. The excess will be squeezed out.
Once the spinach is done, squeeze them to remove as much water as possible, the more water you remove, the less flour you’ll need later. Most recipes finely chop the spinach at this point. I use a different procedure in which IMO works better.
Squeeze the excess milk from the bread and add to the spinach. Use an immersion blender to puree the two finely. Add two pinches of salt.
Break the eggs in a bowl, stir together with a fork till mixed and add to the spinach mixture. Stir well.
Start adding the flour one tablespoon at a time. The dumpling batter will remain quite runny, but once it starts to come off the bowl’s walls, it is likely ready. As a rough indication, use six heaped ones last time. It is better to use slightly less flour than too much. The best way to test this is to try cooking one or two strangolapreti dumplings.
Have the sage butter (see below) and parmesan ready. Put a large pot of water on the stove and bring to a gentle boil.
To make the strangolapreti dumplings, you’ll need a teaspoon and a cup full of water beside the boiling water pot. Dip the tablespoon in the cold water, scoop up some dumpling batter and dump in the boiling water. Play around a bit till you get the size you like. The Strangolapreti will be ready once they float to the top, just like gnocchi.
Remove the Strangolapreti from the pot, carefully removing excess water, and transfer to a bowl containing the sage butter. Stir, coating the Strangolapreti with the butter and serve with plenty of grated parmesan. You can use about two scant tablespoons of butter and three tablespoons of grated parmesan for the amounts of Strangolapreti given.
This recipe is adapted from Anneliese Kompatscher’s La Cucina nelle Dolomiti
Regional recipe from Trentino