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For Mamma with love - a Mother's Day Special from San Carlo Cicchetti

Treat mum with their Gnocchi alla Sorrentina recipe

Published on March 29th 2011.

For Mamma with love - a Mother's Day Special from San Carlo Cicchetti

Francesco Guarracino, chef at chic dining hit San Carlo Cicchetti, has re-created a special dish for Mother's Day which is close to his heart.

Francesco’s Gnocchi alla Sorrentina is a simple yet comforting dish which he was taught to make as a young boy in Sorrento by his 'mamma', Filomena.

The son of a two star Michelin chef and with a mother who also loved to cook, Francesco soon caught the cooking bug, creating his own dishes at home at just three-years-old. Francesco continued to craft his skill under world-renowned chef Gualtiero Marchesi in Milan.

Winner of the Italian Federation of Chefs ‘Best Chef Under 40,’ Francesco went on to become a member of the Italian Michelin team and is now at the helm of Manchester’s San Carlo restaurants.

Perfect for Mothers Day or any time you desire a heart-warming treat, we’ve persuaded Francesco to share his mamma’s recipe with us:

“I have such fond memories of learning to make this dish at home in Sorrento. My mamma taught me to make gnocchi at three-years-old using potatoes from the garden. Now I’m teaching my son Emmanuel – he’s two and a half-years-old – to do the same.”

Mamma’s Gnocchi alla Sorrentina (for six people)

1kg of potatoes, Maris Piper work well
300g plain flour
1 egg
Pinch of salt

Francesco Guarracino with his special mother's day dish

600g of good, juicy tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed but still in one piece
100g Buffalo mozzarella
Handful of fresh basil

To make the gnocchi, wash the potatoes leaving the skins on, place in cold water and bring to the boil until cooked through. Rinse under cold water and remove skins.

While still hot, use a ricer to mash the potatoes finely. Add the flour, the egg and salt and mix together thoroughly, making sure there are no lumps.

Place on a board and roll the dough out with your hands until you have a long snake-like roll. Cut into 2cm pieces and press lightly to shape – use the back of a fork or your thumb. Set aside.

To make the sauce, add the oil to a pan with the garlic and heat on a low temperature until the garlic is golden. Add the tomatoes and cook for 10-15 mins on a low heat until all the juice has been released from the tomatoes.

Remove the garlic and add the gnocchi to the sauce with a handful of fresh basil. Mix thoroughly, remove from the heat, add the cheese and toss the ingredients in the pan. Serve immediately. It's great with a sweet rose wine.

If you’d rather Francesco create the dish for you and your mum, head to San Carlo Cicchetti. This special dish, presented in a delicious parmesan basket, will be available from 31 March-7 April and will cost just £5.95.

Reservations are available at San Carlo Cicchetti for Mother’s Day dining through to 11pm on Sunday 3 April. To book, please call 0161 839 2233.

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