Stir: Mixing It Up in the Italian Tradition
By Barbara Lynch
Hardcover, 352 pages
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
List Price: $35.00
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
8 ounces mushrooms, preferably chanterelles, halved if large, cleaned and trimmed (about 2 cups)
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup peas (fresh or thawed frozen)
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1/2 recipe Truffled Gnocchi (see below)
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives
Melt the butter over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender.
In a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a boil and cook over medium heat until reduced by half. Add the cream, peas, and thyme to the mushrooms and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, while you cook the gnocchi.
Cook the gnocchi in boiling salted water until they float to the top, about 5 minutes. Drain well and toss the gnocchi with the cream sauce. Season the gnocchi well with salt and pepper before dividing it among four bowls. Garnish each serving with the chopped chives and a drizzle of truffle oil.
2 - 2-1/4 pounds medium-to high-starch potatoes, such as Idaho (russet), whole and unpeeled (2 - 3 potatoes)
1-1/2 - 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons white truffle oil
Put the potatoes in a medium pot of salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until very tender (a cake tester or toothpick inserted will pull out easily), about 30 minutes. Drain the potatoes well and allow them to cool just until you're able to handle them.
Peel the potatoes while still quite hot (the skin will come off easily) and rice them onto a baking sheet to cool.
Have ready a parchment-lined, lightly floured baking sheet or platter in a size that will fit in your freezer. Dump the cooled potatoes onto a lightly floured work surface. Sprinkle 1-1/2 cups of the flour over the potatoes and fluff the flour into the potatoes, using your fingers and a light touch. Gently gather the potatoes into a mound. Create a well in the center of the mound and add 1-1/2 teaspoons salt. Crack the eggs into the well, add the truffle oil, and, using your fingers, combine all the ingredients. Knead the dough by pushing it away from you with the heel of your hand, folding it over, giving it a quarter turn, and pushing it away again. Continue kneading, sprinkling on a little more flour as needed, until the dough just forms a ball and feels delicate and a little bit sticky. Set the dough aside and clean the work surface of any hard bits of dough.
Sprinkle the work surface lightly with flour. Roll the dough out with a rolling pin to about 1/2 inch thick. Use a bench scraper or knife to cut the dough into strips about 1/2 inch wide. Roll each strip under your hands to form a log and cut the logs into 1-inch pieces. If you like, you can give your gnocchi grooves, by sliding them against the back of a fork's tines. If you are not cooking the gnocchi right away, freeze them on the baking sheet or platter in a single layer until frozen solid. Once frozen, you can transfer them to a freezer bag or other airtight container.
From Stir: Mixing It Up in the Italian Tradition by Barbara Lynch. Copyright 2009 by Barbara Lynch. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.