Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Stinging Nettles and Parmesan Cream

Sweet and russet potatoes are boiled and mashed with sprouted wheat flour, pastured egg, sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper and served in a sauce of fried sage, shallots and garlic with fresh cream, steamed nettles and grated Parmesan.  Topped with toasted pine nuts and shaved Asiago..

Sweet

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Stinging Nettles and Parmesan Cream

For the Gnocchi

3/4 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/4 pound russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 cup sprouted wheat flour
1 large, pastured egg
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
bowl of ice water
olive oil

Boil potatoes until soft then use a slotted spoon to transfer them to a cutting board (reserve cooking water). Mash the still-hot potatoes with ricer or a large fork until mostly smooth, then allow to cool 5-10 minutes.

Gather the potatoes into a mound and create a well in the center. Sprinkle the flour over the top, then crack an egg into the center.  Add salt and pepper and stir into the flour and potatoes as you would regular pasta. Knead gently until nearly dry, about 4 minutes.

Roll dough into 3/4″ diameter cylinders, then cut into 1″ lengths. Squish each gnocchi against the back of a fork then drop into boiling water and cook until they float, about 1 minute. Transfer to ice bath and allow to cool.  Drain, lightly coat with olive oil and hold until ready to use.

For the Cream Sauce

1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 clove garlic, slivered
8 fresh sage leaves, torn
1 tablespoon butter
1 oz white wine
1 cup fresh cream
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1 1/2 cups fresh nettles, steamed, drained and chopped as you would for fresh spinach
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper

Melt the butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat until shimmering.  Add shallot, garlic and sage and fry until slightly crisp. Add wine and reduce until nearly dry. Reduce heat to medium low and slowly whisk in cream. Cook until reduced in volume by about 1/3, then stir in Parmesan and nettles.  Season to taste with salt and pepper, then add the gnocchi to the pan and heat through.

To serve, spoon gnocchi and cream sauce onto a plate or shallow bowl and garnish with toasted pine nuts and shaved asiago.

This post is part of Meatless Monday!

Pindi Chana

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Dried chickpeas are soaked overnight before being cooked in lightly salted water and combined with a savory sauce of tomatoes, black tea, fresh ginger, chilies,garlic, onions and toasted spices.  Served with hot tandoori naan brushed with melted ghee..

Pindi Chana

Here’s another pindi chana recipe that includes fruits and nuts.. http://ediblearia.com/2009/10/10/pindi-chana-2/

Red Lentils Tarka with Raisin Chutney

A warming and soothing vegetarian dish of red lentils seasoned with cumin, asafoetida, garlic and curry leaves, served with lacto-fermented raisin chutney and toasted flatbread..

Red Lentils Tarka with Raisin Chutney

For the Chutney (adapted from a recipe by Sally Fallon)

1 1/2 cups organic raisins, soaked in warm filtered water for 1 hour
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro leaves
10 black peppercorns
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1/2 tablespoon cumin seeds
1/2 tablespoon anise seeds
1/2 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons whey
1/2 cup filtered water

Place garlic and cilantro in food processor and pulse a few times.  Drain raisins and add to food processor along with peppercorns, red pepper flakes, seeds and ginger.  Pulse a few times until the mixture becomes a coarse paste.  Transfer to a pint-sized, wide-mouth mason jar and press down lightly with a wooden pounder or a meat hammer.  Mix salt and whey with water and pour into jar.  You may need to poke a few holes in the chutney to allow liquid to percolate through.  Add more water if necessary to cover the chutney.  The top of the chutney should be at least 1 inch below the top of the jar.  Cover tightly and keep at room temperature for about 2 days before transferring to refrigerator.  The chutney should be eaten with 2 months.

For the Lentils

1 cup split red lentils, picked over, rinsed and drained
3 cups vegetable stock or filtered water
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black Tellicherry peppercorns
1 bay leaf

Combine lentils and stock in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil. Skim off any scum, then reduce heat to a simmer.  Add turmeric, pepper and bay.  Cover and simmer until thick and tender, about 40 minutes.

For the Tarka (adapted from a recipe by Madhur Jaffrey)

2 tablespoons ghee
1/3 teaspoon asafoetida
1/2 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1 teaspoon curry leaves, chopped
1-2 small fresh red chillies, chopped
1 clove garlic, coarsely minced
1/2 small onion, diced
1 plum tomato, chopped

Heat ghee in a heavy skillet over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the asafoetida and let it sizzle for 30 seconds.  Add the cumin and chilies and cook until the chillies begin to get crisp, about 1 minute.  Add onions and cook until browned.  Add tomato and garlic and cook until garlic is browned.  Stir the tarka (including all of the liquid) into the lentils, cover and let stand 5 minutes to combine the flavors.

Serve hot with raisin chutney and toasted flatbread.

This post is in support of Meatless Monday, whose goal it is to goal is to help reduce
meat consumption by 15% in order to improve personal health and the health of our planet.

Wild Mushroom Soup with Green Garlic and Toasted Barley

“medicinal mushrooms have been shown to boost heart health, lower the risk of cancer, promote immune function, ward off viruses, bacteria and fungi, reduce inflammation, combat allergies, help balance blood sugar levels and support the body’s detoxification mechanisms”

Wild shiitake, maitake and porcini mushrooms are simmered in homemade vegetable stock with green garlic, onions, parsley, sherry and toasted barley and seasoned with fresh thyme, sea salt and black pepper.  A drizzle of truffle oil seals the deal..

Wild Mushroom Soup with Toasted Barley

Serves 2

2 cups homemade vegetable stock
1 1/2 cups dried shiitake, maitake and porcini mushrooms
1/2 cup barley
1 tablespoon pastured butter
2 bulbs green garlic, including leaves, sliced
1/4 cup yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
2 teaspoons truffle oil, divided
1 1/2 oz medium sherry
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper

Bring vegetable stock to a boil then remove from heat.  Add mushrooms and steep for 1 hour.

Heat butter and half of the truffle oil in a heavy saucepan over medium-low heat.  Add barley and cook, stirring often, until lightly browned.  Add onions and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.

Roughly chop re-hydrated mushrooms and add to the pan with thyme.  Add strained mushroom soaking liquid and simmer until barley is tender, about 25 minutes.  Add sherry, parsley and simmer 5 minutes.  Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and serve garnished with a sautéed mushroom cap and a drizzle of truffle oil.

This post is part of The Food Renegade’s Fight Back Friday!