First, let us say that National Gnocchi Day occurs on the 29th of every month, in Argentina.
We’d never pass up a reason to eat gnocchi. So here’s a recipe adapted from DeLallo Foods.
It’s an appetizer, not the main dish.
In fact, it’s gnocchi antipasto!
We preferred to bulk up the antipasto by placing it on a bed of lettuce, whether for an appetizer or as a luncheon salad.
> The History Of Gnocchi
Ingredients For 4 Appetizer Portions
1. COOK the gnocchi according to package instructions. Drain, rinse with cool water to stop cooking, and let cool for at least 30 minutes.
2. PREPARE the dressing. Whisk together in a small bowl the vinegar, Italian seasoning, lemon juice, and garlic. While whisking, add the olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Whisk to further emulsify as needed.
3. TOSS together in a large bowl the gnocchi, peppers, artichokes, salami, and prosciutto. Add in the dressing and toss to coat.
4. PLATE over the lettuce, if using. Garnish with the basil and lemon zest.
*Italian Seasoning Recipe: If you don’t have an Italian seasoning blend, you can combine 1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano, 1 teaspoon dried marjoram, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, 1/2 teaspoon dried basil, 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary and 1/2 teaspoon dried sage. Keep in a tightly-closed jar. If you don’t have marjoram, use 2 teaspoons of oregano instead.
The story credits the occasion to the Italian immigration to Argentina (their descendants now make up about 50% of Argentina’s population.
This Argentine custom has been a tradition since the first wave of Italian immigrants migrated to the country in 1814 [source].
Since the 29th is almost the end of the month, many families were tight on cash as they waited for their next paycheck, which came on the first of the month.
Potatoes and flour are inexpensive ingredients that enabled the housewife to make a filling (and tasty!) meal.
Some say that the 29th commemorates a patron saint of Venice, San Pantaleon, who was canonized on the 29th, so that each month, the 29th is celebrated as his feast day [source].
What About Good Luck?
As people from the “old country” brought their superstitions along with their recipes, a superstition accompanies the gnocchi.
It assures the eater that good luck may be on the horizon.
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