Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu

I’ve been finding out things the hard way in regards to my health. I chalked my Hashimoto’s up to just getting older and having to live tired. Then there was the scare I had with the first blood pressure medication I tried. And then there were the first three years of college, when I would bravely attempt to drink beer, only to be retching for the rest of the evening, and cursing the fact that I couldn’t handle my alcohol (around my junior year, I gave up on beer and would instead drink gin, because I’m an old man). Fast forward to my first job with insurance and a visit to an allergist, whereupon I learned I’m allergic to hops.

Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu

I had another one of those light-bulb moments at one of my recent doctor’s appointments. The intake nurse was going over my list of allergies (which seems to be growing…My allergist back in Ohio was right…I DO need to be put in a bubble!), and when she got to sulfa drugs, she asked if I was aware of the sulfites in wine. I had a derp moment and started laughing because I never even thought that my allergy to sulfa drugs would be connected to wine.

Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu

However, in doing a bit of research, the two actually aren’t connected. If I drink wine, almost immediately, my face turns bright red and it’s really warm–I drank that tiny bit of wine in the picture there, and after we ate, I popped out to the store to pick up some ice cream. I looked like I had a sunburn.

Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu

It doesn’t happen as severely when I have a mixed drink or hard liquor, so I suspect it’s something more to do with the processing of wine itself. Or I have an allergy of sorts to alcohol in general.

Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu

If that is indeed the case, it’s not severe enough to stop me enjoying my occasional White Russians or Whiskey Sours. I will however, avoid beer at all costs, and in most cases, wine too.

Thankfully, as far as I know I don’t have any wheat allergy or sensitivity. Which is good, because otherwise, there would go my blog! And it means I could make this amazing gnocchi dish! The farro in it comes from farro flour, which you can buy online, or you can do like we did, and grind your own:

Grain Mill

I’d bought farro in berry form at the store specifically to make this recipe, but had intended just to use the food processor to make the flour. Jay reminded me we had a grain mill, and the bambino took it upon himself to mill the bulk of what we needed for the gnocchi.

Yield: 4-6

Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu

Farro Gnocchi with Pork Ragu
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes


For the Ragu:

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 4 oz. bacon, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. lightly-dried chili pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 C tomato paste
  • 1/3 C dry red wine
  • 5 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 C finely grated Parmesan
  • 2 Tbsp. dried parsley

For the Gnocchi:

  • 2 lbs. Russet potatoes, peeled
  • 1 1/2 C all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 3/4 C farro flour
  • 1 C plus 1 Tbsp. finely grated Parmesan
  • 2 large eggs
  • Semolina flour, for dusting


Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high. Cook pork and bacon until browned, 4–5 minutes. Add the lightly-dried chili pepper and garlic and cook until garlic is golden, about 2–3 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and cook 2 minutes. Add the wine and cook until evaporated. Add 4 cups stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer 1 hour.

While the ragu is simmering, make the gnocchi: Bring the potatoes to a boil in a 4-qt. saucepan of water. Drop the heat to medium-high and simmer until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork or knife, about 20-25 minutes. Drain, and return to the pan, placing back on the heat for 1 minute. Shake, in order to "dry" the potatoes slightly. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Place the potatoes in a bowl, and mash with a potato masher. Add flours, Parmesan, and eggs, and using clean hands, mix until a soft dough forms. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and knead until the dough is smooth.

Quarter dough and, working with one quarter at a time, use your hands to roll the dough into a 1/2-inch thick rope. Cut the rope crosswise into 1-inch gnocchi and place them on a semolina-dusted, parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a simmer over medium-high. Cook gnocchi, all at once, until they float, about 2–3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer gnocchi to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and keep warm.

Return ragu to medium heat. Add remaining chicken stock and the butter. Cook until thickened, about 8-10 minutes. Add cooked gnocchi and the Parmesan and toss until warmed through, 1–2 minutes. Garnish with more Parmesan and parsley before serving.

Did you make this recipe?

Tag it on Instagram using #tramplingroserecipes

I wish I had the time/resources to make this on a regular basis. It takes a good chunk of time to make, but OH is it ever good. Salty, chewy, cheesy…The bambino kept comparing the gnocchi to buttered bits of bread. And he went back for seconds on it–That almost NEVER happens!