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Fried sweet baby gnocchi with dried muscatels

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for fried sweet baby gnocchi with dried muscatels by Nino Zoccali from Sydney restaurant Pendolino.

By Nino Zoccali
  • Serves 6
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Fried sweet baby gnocchi with dried muscatels
“This sweet fried pasta dish is very rich and usually served in small quantities, as with biscuits or petits fours. It is wonderful with fresh coffee and Italian liqueurs,” says Zoccali.


  • 375 gm (2½ cups) plain flour
  • 50 gm brown sugar
  • 140 ml moscato
  • 180 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • For deep-frying: olive oil
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
  • Juice of four oranges, strained
  • 100 ml blood orange agrumato olive oil (see note)
  • 100 ml Cognac
  • 100 gm dried muscatel grapes, deseeded
  • 1 cinnamon quill
  • 1 star anise


  • 1
    Combine the flour and brown sugar on a work surface or large wooden board, add the moscato and extra-virgin olive oil and bring together. Knead for 5 minutes. Allow to rest for 1 hour. With damp hands, roll the dough into long logs approximately 1cm in diameter. Cut the logs into 1cm pieces and roll into little balls.
  • 2
    For the sauce, place all the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over very low heat, stirring regularly for approximately 15-20 minutes until the muscatels are rehydrated and infused.
  • 3
    Heat the olive oil in a deep saucepan, no more than half full, or in a large deep-sided frying pan, to 180C. Deep-fry the gnocchetti for about 4 minutes or until light golden (be careful as hot oil will spit). Drain on a paper towel. Just before serving, toss the gnocchetti through the sauce and serve immediately.


If you can’t find blood orange agrumato olive oil, substitute extra-virgin olive oil and half a teaspoon of finely chopped orange zest.
This recipe is from
by Nino Zoccali, published by Murdoch Books, $49.99, hbk. It has been reproduced with minor
style changes.
This recipe is from the August 2012 issue of

  • undefined: Nino Zoccali