Monday, 21 June 2010

Crispy Gnocchi with Cremini and Spring Peas

Ever pan-fry gnocchi instead of boiling them?
Me neither. Until this weekend that is.
What an awesome way to make gnocchi! Who wants to boil big vats of water when it is already broiling in the house anyway - this way is simpler and more fun in the long run. And who doesn't like crispy things?
This was a fun and delicious meal for my hubz on Father's Day, adapted from one of my fave rock and roll chefs - Michael Symon. The man knows big flavour.

Crispy Gnocchi with Cremini and Spring Peas
adapted from Michael Symon, Live to Cook
for Michael Symon Sundays

3/4 cup AP flour
1/2 cup grated pecorino romano
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 cup whole-milk ricotta, strained overnight
1 large egg

6 tbsp unsalted butter
1 shallot, thinly sliced
12 good sized cremini, sliced
3 cloves garlic, thinly slice
1/4 cup parsley leaves
Juice of 1 lemon
1 pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed. Reserve water
1/2 cup shelled fresh peas
1/3 cup grated pecorino romano

Make the gnocchi - combine all the ingredients and mix gently with a fork at first, then gently knead until it comes together. You may need to adjust the flour. Don't overwork the dough.
Divide dough into 4 pieces and roll them, one at a time, into ropes about 1/2 inch in diameter on a lightly floured surface.
With a bench scraper, cut the ropes into 1 inch pieces and then roll them with a gnocchi board or a fork if you wish. Line your gnocchi, not touching, on a lightly floured wax-paper lined baking sheet and cover with foil lightly. Refrigerate until needed.

Make the sauce - heat up half the butter in a sauté pan, add the shallot and sauté for 2 minutes. Add mushrooms and garlic and sauté until soft. Add spinach, lemon juice, parsley and peas. Heat through and remove from heat.

Heat the other half of the butter over medium-high in a skillet big enough to handle all of the gnocchi. When the butter is bubbling and happy, add the gnocchi. Let brown on one side and then flip and let brown on the other side. This may take 5-6 minutes.
When they are nice and toasty, add in the sauce and the reserved spinach water. Cook for 2 minutes and then serve in shallow bowls with grated pecorino romano.

We served Michael Symon's Spicy Stuffed Peppers as an amuse bouche earlier in the evening. Symon makes his in Hungarian hot peppers but I couldn't find any this weekend so I stuffed jalapenos instead.
I just stuffed them with fresh chorizo sausage and grilled them until nice and charred and then closed the BBQ to let them bake through.
They were very tasty - and hot! Seems I didn't necessarily get the seeds that were hiding way down in the bottoms of the peppers. Whoops! Anyway, a couple of cold beers and the fire was out. ;-)
Symon serves his with a sauce, but, as we are having a heatwave and I was grilling - I just served them au naturel. Definitely a keeper recipe - so easy and so tasty. Although I might try harder to find the Hungarian peppers next time. If only to keep my husband from accusing me of trying to kill him.