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Potato-Cheddar Gnocchi with Bacon and Eggs

Potato-Cheddar Gnocchi with Bacon and Eggs

YIELD: 24 servings

6 lbs. Russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
4 eggs, beaten
½ cup half-and-half
8 oz. grated cheddar cheese
¼ cup salt
1 lb., 8 oz. all-purpose flour
4 lbs. plum tomatoes
¼ cup olive oil
4 tsps. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 cups chopped fresh basil
24 eggs, poached
48 bacon strips, cooked

1. For gnocchi: steam potatoes over boiling water, covered, about 15 minutes or until tender. Transfer to a large bowl; mash with potato masher. Cool slightly; gently mix in eggs, half-and-half, cheese and salt. Add flour one cup at a time, mixing gently after each addition. If dough is sticky, add a bit more flour.

2. Divide dough into 16 equal pieces. On floured surface, roll each piece into a 1" diameter rope; flatten slightly and cut into 24 gnocchi. Transfer gnocchi to sheet pan lined with a lightly floured towel; cover with another towel. Refrigerate until needed.

3. For the oven-roasted tomatoes: quarter tomatoes; cut each quarter in half again. In large bowl, toss tomatoes with oil, salt and pepper. Spread tomatoes on sheet pan in one layer. Roast in 475°F oven about 20 minutes until soft and slightly browned.

4. For each serving, to order: Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add 16 gnocchi; boil about 5 minutes or until firm and cooked through. With skimmer, transfer gnocchi to mixing bowl; add 8 pieces oven-roasted tomatoes and 4 tsps. basil. Toss gently; transfer to shallow soup bowl. Place 1 warm poached egg on top of gnocchi; garnish with 2 strips bacon.

Recipe: New Classic Category and Grand Prize Winner: United States Potato Board 2005 Menu Innovation Recipe Contest: Katie Schnidman, Bayberry Inn in Newport, RI. Photo: United States Potato Board

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