Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Arugula Gnocchi with Spicy Brown Butter Sauce

With the holidays behind us an my feeling of not wanting to have ham or turkey for at least another nine months, I am in the market for some different recipes....nothing that resembles the cranberry sauce and dressing of the festive season behind us now. 

As I search, the hungrier I get (is that a word? who cares...I am using it).

My boards on Pinterest are in direct conflict with one another...."Skinny Recipes" and "Recipes I Want To Try" have nothing in common except for the person who created them.

Torn between being so cold due to the weather outside and trying desperately to crave a salad that I came to this what looks good but all in moderation.  Maybe that will be my new motto! Stand by for a cross-stitched version!

This dish ended up being hearty and delicious with the fresh crisp bite of arugula!

Arugula Gnocchi with Spicy Brown Butter Sauce

for the gnocchi
a handful fresh arugula
1 large russet potato
1 egg yolk
1 cup all-purpose flour (you might need more while kneading)

for the sauce
4 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon chili flakes
zest of 1 lemon
parmesan cheese
fresh lemon juice
pine nutes

Boil the potato in salted water and while it’s still warm, carefully peel the skin. 
Using either a food mill or fork, mash the boiled potato in a bowl. 
Do not over mash but make sure there are no lumps.
Using a blender or food processor, grind arugula with egg yolk. 
Pour the mixture over mashed potatoes and give it a rough mix. 
Add a pinch of salt and drizzle some flour on top. 
Using a spatula, start working on the dough. 
Keep adding flour as you go until the dough is moist but not sticky.
Roll the dough into a log and using a knife, cut into several pieces. In my case, it was 5 pieces.
Work with one piece at a time. 
Dust some flour on it and roll it out to a much thinner log this time. Cut the thinner log into multiple pieces using a knife, each around 3/4 inch. Now using a fork or the gnocchi board, shape each piece. Place one piece at a time and press it with your finger lightly so it forms the ridges. Then, roll it to form a curl. Set it aside and move on to the next piece.
Once you are done creating the gnocchi, start with boiling the gnocchi and the sauce.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the gnocchi (in batches, if required). It will take about 3 to 4 minutes for it to become fluffy and float on top.
In the mean time, keep a pan ready with 1-tablespoon butter at medium heat. This will be used fry the gnocchi after boiling. Drop the boiled gnocchi and sauté it for about couple of minutes.
In another medium hot pan, add 3 tablespoons of butter. It will sizzle and melt slowly. Add chili flakes and lemon zest. 

In couple of minutes, the butter will turn brown in color. Keep an eye as it can turn from brown to black in a matter of seconds. Finally, drop fried gnocchi to the pan and mix it to coat the sauce properly.
Drizzle some fresh lemon juice, add parmesan cheese, toss with fresh arugula and serve immediately.

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