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Gnocchetti Sardi with Sausage and Pomodoro Ragu

Cook Time:
10 mins
Prep Time:
1 hr

Chef notes

Traditional Sardinian pasta, gnochetti sardi with sausage and pomodoro, is something I grew up eating with my dad at his restaurant. Nothing better and such great memories. We used to finish it off with grilled quail and polenta, but that's for another Father's Day.

Technique tip: Once the gnocchetti are formed, you can freeze in freezer bags for up to 1 month.

Swap option: Penne pasta.


Gnochetti Sardi
  • cups semolina flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1/2 cup 00 flour
  • 3/4 cup + 2 teaspoons warm water
Sausage and Pomodoro Ragu
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound fennel sausage, casings removed
  • 1 medium yellow onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup good red wine
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole San Marzano tomatoes
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 rinds Parmigiano or Pecorino
  • kosher salt, to taste
To Assemble
  • 3 cups Sausage and Pomodoro Ragu
  • 2 cups Gnocchetti Sardi
  • Parmigiano or Pecorino Sardo, freshly grated
  • 10 leaves fresh basil, torn
  • 2 tablespoons minced Italian parsley
  • extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling


For the gnochetti sardi:


In a medium sized bowl, add the flours and make a well. Then add the warm water and slowly start incorporating with a fork.


When well-mixed, turn over to a tabletop and finish kneading the dough by hand for additional 5 minutes. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes to rest.


Roll out the gnochetti sardi on a wooden surface and form with rigagnocchi (gnocchi board) or the back tines of a fork.

For the sausage and pomodoro ragu:

In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, add the olive oil until slightly smoking, add the sausage and start browning. Remove the sausage after browned on each side and add the onions and garlic, then sweat until lightly cooked. Deglaze with red wine and reduce by half then add the whole tomatoes and chicken stock, cheese rinds and the sausage, and bring the sauce to a simmer.

Cook the ragu for 2 hours on low, stirring often until concentrated and tasty, and adjust seasoning with salt.

To assemble:


Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.


In a large saucepan, over medium heat, add the ragu and bring to a simmer.


Drop the gnocchetti sardi in the boiling water and cook for 4 minutes if fresh (5 minutes if frozen). When the pasta is floating, strain out the gnocchetti sardi and add directly to the ragu pan. Cook for an additional minute with a touch of pasta water until the sauce is nice and shiny.


Remove pan from heat, toss in the Parmigiano, basil, parsley and olive oil to finish. Plate and finish with more oil and a hefty grating of cheese.