Gnudi con Fiori di Zucca
Bring 6 quarts of water to a rolling boil and add 2 teaspoons salt.
Clean the zucchini blossoms, removing the pistils and gently rinsing them under running water to remove any pollen from the interior. Let air dry. Reserve 4 blossoms and set aside. Being careful not to crush the blossoms, gently chop them into 1/2-inch pieces.
In a small mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, chopped zucchini flowers, egg, Parmigiano and half of the flour. Using a wooden spoon, mix until the ingredients are well combined, being careful not to crush the bits of blossom. Salt, to taste. Using your hands, form 8 large gnocchi from the mixture, using all of it.
Place the remaining flour in a shallow bowl. Dredge all 8 gnocchi through the flour, so that all sides of the gnocchi are dusted in flour. Gently shake off any excess.
Gently drop the gnocchi in the boiling water. When the gnocchi rise to the top, after about 3 to 5 minutes, use a slotted spoon to remove the prepared gnocchi from the pot and set aside to dry.
While the gnocchi cooks, combine the butter and saffron in a 10-inch saucepan over a medium flame. Let melt until the saffron colors the butter. Add salt, to taste. Add the remaining 4 blossoms and the drained gnocchi to the pan and cook gently. If the gnocchi has cooled off considerably, allow them to cook for several minutes until reheated.
Divide the gnocchi into 4 warmed pasta bowls. Garnish with pecorino and serve immediately.
Recipe courtesy Mario Batali