Beetroot Gnocchi & Beef Cheeks

Gluten Free Beetroot Gnocchi and Braised Beef Cheeks with Basil Pesto

So my recipe turned out to be fairly AMAZING!!!

Here it is finally! Try it out it, it was pretty delicious and I wanted another serving.

Photo 1



300 grams of starchy potato

100 grams of beetroot

170 grams of gluten free plain flour

1 free range egg

2 grams Maldon sea salt


4 Beef Cheeks (trimmed of fat)

1.5  litres of beef or chicken stock

500 mls of red wine

2 carrots, chopped

6 shallots, chopped

3 whole cloves of garlic

2 stalks of celery (chunky slice)

1 bay leaf

One Yellow Capsicum


A large bunch of fresh basil

One half of a lemon, juiced

1 tablespoon of honey

A half a cup of toasted pine nuts

A small bunch of fresh thyme

One half a cup of olive oil (Extra virgin)

100 grams of finely grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan


To make the gnocchi, pre-heat the oven to 1800C. Please the beetroot on a baking tray and bake for 30 minutes. Allow to cool. Peel the beetroot, place in a food processor and process until smooth. (TIP: don’t boil the beetroot. It might retain its colour but it will definitely lose its flavour)

Bring the water in a large saucepan to the boil, then add the potatoes whole with the skin still on in salted water (2 pinches) until cooked, this takes about 30 minutes. You can test if they are cooked by using a fork to push into them. Another method is to bake the potatoes whole, so it’s really up to you which you prefer.

Once cooked drain the potatoes and then peel them being careful not to burn yourself. If you use the sharp end of a potato peeler or a knife you can make a shallow cut down the length of the potato, this makes it easy to peel the skin off.

Break up the potatoes and pass them through a potato ricer or a ‘mouli’ (vegetable food mill) and into a large bowl.

Add the beetroot, flour, egg and salt to the bowl and mix to combine.

Prepare a work area and dust it with extra flour. Take the dough, a piece at a time, and roll it out with your hands until you have rolls about 2.5cm to 3 cm in diameter. The thickness will depend on how big you would like the gnocchi to be when it is finished.

Cut the tubes of dough into pieces about 2.5 to 3cm long. Pick up each piece of dough, and with a standard kitchen fork, holding the tines curving upwards, with the cut face of the dough against the fork, use your finger to press a piece of dough gently against the fork and roll it slightly, then place it on a plate that is lightly covered in flour.

Cover all the plates with cling film and refrigerate until ready to use. The gnocchi can be prepared ahead of time and frozen if necessary until you want to use it. Then all you need to do is cook it when you have the accompanying sauce ready.


Make sure the beef cheeks are at room temperature. Dry the beef cheeks with a paper towel.

Brown the beef cheeks till golden brown in a hot frying pan and seal off with a little olive oil. Remove the beef cheeks and place in a ceramic backing dish with a lid. Add the shallots and red wine to the frying pan and allow cook lightly allowing the red wine to reduce a little.

Pour this red wine and shallots over the beef cheeks then add the other ingredients on top. Cover and cook on high heat (250 deg) for 30 mins then reduce heat and cook for further 2 hrs on (150 deg)  after about half and hour check occasionally stirring to make sure the cheeks are not sticking to the bottom of pan. Once you can see the colour of the beef darkening and the beef is softening  (insert a fork to check this) then remove the lid for the last half an hour.

Place the large slices of yellow capsicum onto a baking tray and bake for 30 minutes.


Put all the ingredients into the food processor and mix until you have a smooth fine paste that can be drizzled easily on the gnocchi. If it isn’t drizzling then add more olive oil until you get the desired result. Set aside.


Cook the gnocchi in boiling water until each piece rises to the surface or pops up. Drain and place on each plate one quarter of the gnocchi pieces. Drizzle the Basil Pesto over the gnocchi and drizzle some along the side of the plate.

Take one beef cheek piece and place gently on top of the gnocchi. Using a big spoon scoop out some of the vegetables and juices from the baking dish and pour over each beef cheek until you feel there is enough on the plate, place one piece of yellow capsicum on one side and serve with a sprig of fresh basil on the side.

© Cook Gluten Free 2013