1. This can be made with fresh or canned pumpkin. With either, step 1 in the recipe must be followed to remove some of the water from the puree, otherwise the dough is too sticky. If more flour is added to compensate, the gnocchi is not as soft.
Fresh Pumpkin or Butternut: Peel, deseed and cut into 3cm / 1.25" chunks. Cook in boiling water for 10 minutes or until very soft. Drain in a colander and leave for 5 minutes to steam dry a bit, then mash. Then proceed with recipe.
2. There are different varieties of ricotta available. This recipe works best with soft ricotta that is so soft it's spreadable on bread, not the firmer ricotta that can be crumbled like feta with your hands. Woolies and Coles in Australia sell the firm ricotta over the deli - it is best to purchase one of the tubs in the refrigerator section. I've used most of the brands, even good value ones, and they all worked just fine.
3. I highly recommend using a high quality butter for the sauce because it's the crowning glory to finish this dish. I use the Lurpak
block with the navy blue silver label which is slightly salted which has the perfect seasoning so I don't need to add any salt at all to the dish.
4. The dough should be a bit sticky but should form a ball i.e. comes away from edge of bowl. If too sticky, add a touch of flour - but the bare minimum required to be able to handle it!
5. Aim for square cuts, when you cut through it will drag the dough down and become a rectangle shape which is what you want to get the classic gnocchi shape.
6. STORAGE / MAKEAHEAD: Cooked gnocchi does not keep well - it sucks up all the sauce, making it bloated and soft on the surface. They become a bit sticky when refrigerated so it's not my favourite way to store it, but you can - add a dusting of flour before refrigerating for up to 2 days. The best way is to freeze it uncooked - spread out in single layers with paper in between in an airtight container, once firm you can transfer into ziplock bags if you prefer. Frozen gnocchi can be cooked from frozen - they will dimple a tiny bit more but they taste like they've been made fresh!
7. Nutrition (4 servings) - I know the calculator says 126g / 4 oz per serve but actually, it is more because the gnocchi expands when cooking because it absorbs water.