GNOCCHI WITH WILD MUSHROOMS (MORELS if you can get them), ENGLISH PEAS AND ASPARAGUS SAUTE
This entire dish is inspired by SPRING! Gnocchi in this style is so much lighter than the pasta-dumplings with the same name, and the vegetables are the best sign of early spring. Also vegetarian if you skip the bacon.
4 cups milk
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1 cup fine semolina
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- To Taste ground pepper, ground coriander and nutmeg
- 2 egg yolks
- ½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 4 ounce butter, melted
Combine milk with 1 TB butter in heavy sauce pan and bring to a high simmer; remove from heat and pour in semolina in a steady stream, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon; add salt, pepper, coriander and nutmeg to taste; return to heat and stir constantly until bubbling; reduce heat to low and cook for approximately 5 minutes – semolina should be thick enough to stand the spoon upright; remove from heat and add yolks and half the Parmesan; remove to greased pan and spread to desired thickness; place in refrigerator until cooled and firm; cut desired shapes and place in greased oven proof serving dish; drizzle with butter and top with remaining cheese; bake at 375ºF for approximately 20 minutes or until gnocchi are golden and bubbly; remove to serving plates and hold warm.
SPRING MUSHROOMS AND VEGETABLES
1 Tablespoons EVOO
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, sliced
- ½ cup morels, chopped or other wild mushroom
- ½ cup asparagus, blanched, sliced
- ½ cup peas, blanched ½ cup white wine
2 Tablespoons salted butter, diced, cold
1 cup cream , reduced by half, held warm
1 cup arugula
- 4 pieces pancetta or bacon crisped
- 2 ounce ricotta salada cheese
Place oil in a heated, medium sauté pan; add shallots and garlic, cooking until aromatic; add wine and cook to reduce liquid in pan by half; add asparagus, cooking to heat through; add peas and reduced cream; place mixture over gnocchi and finish plate with fresh arugula and crisped pancetta, followed by a few shavings of the cheese.