Serves 4

If you’re lucky enough to be able to find a wild garlic ‘patch’ whilst out on your daily exercise then perfect! If however, you’re not then just substitute the wild garlic in the pesto recipe for the same amount of basil.

500g of cooked, peeled potatoes (this will make more sense once you read the method)
100g plain flour
2 large egg yolks ( 3 if smaller )
75g Parmesan, very finely grated
Salt to taste
150g purple sprouting broccoli
200g asparagus

FOR THE PANGRATATTO ( fried breadcrumbs )
1 1/2 slices of white bread, crusts off, roughly torn up
1 garlic clove, minced
Good pinch of dried chilli flakes
Zest of 1/2 lemon
4 sprigs thyme, leaves picked
3 salted anchovies, minced with the back of a knife

25g basil leaves
25g wild garlic leaves
25g Parmesan, very finely grated
80g pine nuts, toasted
Good squeeze of lemon juice
75ml extra virgin olive oil

Start by making the gnocchi. As mentioned above you’ll need 500g cooked weight of potato. The potatoes need to be baked, this is to ensure they’re not wet when it comes to making the dough. So for 500g cooked weight you’ll need to bake around 1kg-1.2kg of potatoes.

Put them on a baking tray and pop them in the oven on 160* fan for anything around 1 – 1 1/2 hours or until cooked through. Let cool completely. Ideally, bake the day before and leave in the fridge overnight.

Peel the potatoes with a small knife then weigh out 500g. Grate on the finest side of a grater making sure there’s no lumps.

Put the grated potato into a large bowl and add the flour, egg yolks, Parmesan and start to combine the mixture with a wooden spoon. When it starts to come together, season with salt, mix and taste. Now turn out onto a work surface and work the dough with your hands. It’s very important to NOT overwork the dough. Work it until it’s totally incorporated and then no further. Don’t work it like a bread dough for example.

Cut the dough into 4 or 5 chunks and roll each out on a floured surface into ‘sausages’, about 1 1/2 cm in diameter. Dust well with flour. Bring a pan of salted water up to the boil. Cut the gnocchi into 2cm long pieces. If you want to, roll the individual gnocchi over a fork, no essential though.

Blanch the gnocchi in batches in the boiling salted water, taking them out once they float to the surface. Refresh them immediately in cold water to cool them down as quickly as possible and stop them from further cooking. Once they’re all blanched, strain them well and toss them in a little olive oil to prevent them from sticking together. Set aside whilst you make the other components.

Now make the pangratatto. Put all the ingredients into a food processor and blitz into breadcrumbs. Heat a good knob of butter, around 50g with a splash of olive oil and fry the breadcrumbs until golden and crisp. Remove onto kitchen towel. Set aside until needed.

Now make the pesto. Put everything except the olive oil and lemon juice into a food processor. Pulse into a rough paste and remove to a bowl. Stir in the lemon juice and olive oil and season to taste with salt. Set aside until needed.

Now prep the veg. Snap the woody ends off the asparagus and Blanch whole in boiling, salted water. Remove when they’ve still got a slight bite to them and refresh immediately in cold water to stop them cooking. Repeat the process for the purple sprouting broccoli. Now cut them both into 2cm long batons and set aside.

To pull the dish together bring a pan of salted water to the boil and heat a large frying pan. Melt a knob of butter with a drizzle of olive oil in the frying pan and drop the gnocchi into the boiling water. Boil 1 minute then strain the gnocchi and add to the frying pan. Fry 2-3 minutes to colour the gnocchi then add the veg to the frying pan. Fry another 2-3 minutes until the veg is hot then stir through the pesto. Take off the heat. Serve.

Garnish with the pangratatto, toasted pine nuts and grated Parmesan cheese.


CST Elephant