Hi and Happy Spring, everyone! There is a sense of newness and opportunity as the blooms roll in and the days warm up. With all this extra light in the evenings, I’ve been tackling a few more project-oriented recipes to match the eagerness of the changing season.
This gnocchi, for instance, is so much easier to prepare than you might imagine. I’ve used in-season sunchokes in place of the traditional potato here for a nutty, complex flavor and dressed the dish with a lemon butter sauce to inspire dreams of summer. With time and a bit of patience, you can whip these up in the time it takes to savor a class of Kendall-Jackson Vintner’s Reserve Pinot Noir as the sun goes down.
- 2 pounds Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and cubed
- 3 – 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup ricotta
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ½ cup butter
- 2 Meyer lemons, juiced
- 4 Tsp chives, minced
- ½ cup flat leaf parsley, minced
- salt/pepper to taste
- grated fresh Parmesan for garnish
- Boil sunchokes in a large pot of water for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to sit for an additional 10 minutes before processing.
- In the basin of a high powered blender, combine ricotta, olive oil, and cooked sunchokes. Blend on high until completely pureed. Place mixture in the basin of a large bowl. Stir in egg. Slowly stir in flour 1 cup at a time. Continue to mix in flour until the dough just stops sticking to your fingers. Knead for a few minutes until you have a completely mixed mound of dough. Divide into 6-8 sections using a pastry scraper.
- Lightly flour your prep surface, then roll each section of dough into a snake-shaped log, roughly the thickness of your thumb. Use your pastry scraper to cut off ½” sections. Many like to use a fork to make tiny indentations on the surface of the pasta, but I prefer to take the little piece in my hand and roll it into an acorn shape. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook gnocchi for 2 minutes in the boiling water in batches to prevent sticking. Remove semi-cooked gnocchi from pot and place in a saucepan with melted butter to lightly crisp and brown the sides. Continue to add boiled gnocchi to the saucepan with butter and frying gnocchi as you move along. Remove from heat after the last boil has finished.
- Garnish with juice of 2 Meyer lemons, chives, parsley, and fresh grated Parmesan.