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Executive Chef Margaret Chisholm’s Weekend Diary

Location:  Sunshine Coast.  In the morning my friend Peter checked the crab trap he had set the night before. There were four dungeness crabs.  Perfect, as there were four of us for dinner!  We picked wild chanterelles in the afternoon. Amongst them were two yellow foots and two hedgehog mushrooms. It was time to cook!

Executive Chef Margaret

The calm blue ocean view from Peter’s cottage was very easy on the eyes. I was inspired to make fresh gnocchi as it’s my favourite way to serve chanterelles. Soft potato-scented pillows with tender, fruity mushrooms all held together with a little cream, Marsala and fresh thyme.

Next, I sautéed the fresh crab with lime zest, chilies, ginger, shallots and the last of the rosé wine.  We washed it down with a buttery Australian bubbly.   It was such a delicious dinner.

Here is another Gnocchi recipe using chanterelle mushrooms that we make here at Culinary Capers.

Culinary Capers Gnocchi with Chamterelle Mushrooms

Gnocchi with Chanterelle Mushrooms, Smoked Tomato Cream and Gremolata
Makes 10 servings (10 per serving)

1 ½ lbs  Yukon gold potatoes
1 ½ cups  All-purpose flour
1  Egg
2 tsp  Sea salt

Peel potatoes, cut into quarters, place in cold water.  Bring to a gentle boil and cook until just tender.  Drain. Dry for a few minutes over low heat. Put potatoes through a potato ricer.

Place potato on countertop and form a well in the center.  Place eggs into well and slowly incorporate into potato.

Place the flour and sea salt on a countertop.  Incorporate most of the flour into the potato mixture with a metal scraper.  Work in just the right amount of flour.  Knead for 30 seconds.

Flatten the dough out to a 1 inch slab.  Cut into 1 inch strips.  Roll each strip into a rope and cut into 1 inch pieces.  Place on a well-floured cookie sheet.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil on high heat and add coarse salt.  Add the gnocchi and stir very gently.

Boil the gnocchi until they float to the top of the pot.  Count to ten, then remove the gnocchi with a large slotted spoon and place them in a large bowl.   Drain well.   Sauté in butter until golden brown.

Smoked Tomato Cream (makes 4 cups)
1  Onion, small, finely diced
2  Garlic cloves, finely diced
1 tsp  Fennel seeds
½ tsp  Black mustard seeds
1 Tbsp  Smoked paprika
¼ tsp  Dried red chilies
3 cups  Tomato purée
½ cup  White wine
2 cups  Heavy cream
Smoked salt and pepper to taste

Sauté onions with spices until sweet.
Add garlic and wine, then reduce by 80%.
Add tomato purée and cook 30 minutes.
Add heavy cream and reduce by ½.
Season to taste with smoked salt and black pepper.

1 cup  Chanterelle mushrooms, sliced
1 Tbsp  Pernod  (plus 1 Tbsp water)
1 Tbsp  Thyme, finely minced
4 Tbsp  Chives, finely minced
¼ cup  Unsalted butter
2 Tbsp  Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Sauté mushrooms in olive oil until tender.
Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add Pernod, cover and steam for 3 minutes.  Uncover and reduce until dry.
Add thyme and chives.
Re-season if necessary.  Add butter.
Toss into hot gnocchi and top with crispy sage gremolata.

Crispy Sage Gremolata
1 cup  Butter
¼ lb  Sage leaves, picked off stems
1 cup  Panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup  Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
3 Tbsp  Lemon zest
1 tsp  Garlic, finely chopped

In a sauce pan, place the butter and sage over medium heat.
Fry sage in butter until golden brown.  Reserve brown butter.
Drain sage leaves on a paper towel.
Take brown butter and toss with panko.  Bake until panko is golden brown.
Mix golden panko with sage, zest, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and garlic.
Top each plate of gnocchi generously.




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