From the garden

With the onset of spring, we crave fresh vegetables after filling up on roots during the winter months-but with the crisp start to the day and cool evenings, we still need an element of comfort in our diet. This dish meets all these criteria.

Green Gnocchi with Herbs
Nettle gnocchi with wild herbs

Wild nettle, which can be found in hedgerows at this time of year, is known for its vitamin-rich healing properties. It is a bit intimidating to handle (marigolds are required), but if it is too difficult to obtain, this dish can also be made with spinach or young chard.

For 6 people
800 g of potatoes
800 g of young nettle leaves/ or spinach or young chard
2 eggs, lightly beaten
50 g grated parmesan cheese (add more to serve)
200 g of plain flour (type 00)
4 tablespoons of Montecalvi extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped sage, basil, thyme, parsley, tarragon and oregano
White wine (use our Vermentino, we don’t mind!)
200 ml plain cream

Boil washed potatoes with skin on in lightly salted water for about 15 minutes. Drain and peel them when they are cool enough to handle. Press the potatoes through a potato masher and place them in a large bowl.

Rinse the nettles many times with thick gloves and then boil them in lightly salted water for a few minutes. Drain and allow to cool. Squeeze out excess water, chop finely and mix with potatoes. Add the egg and Parmesan cheese and adjust the seasoning to taste. Add enough flour to make an elastic dough with your hands.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. On a lightly floured work surface, quickly separate the pieces of dough and roll them into thin sausages about 1 cm in diameter. Then cut these into 2-cm rectangles with a sharp knife. Set aside on a lightly floured tray.

Cook the dumplings in batches for about 2-3 minutes until they rise to the top of the pan. Once cooked, place them in a bowl and brush them with olive oil to prevent them from drying out until you have prepared the sauce.

The sauce is quick to prepare. Start with a good glass of Montecalvi olive oil and add the chopped herbs, tossing for a minute or two until they take on flavor in the oil. Add about half a glass of white wine, reduce for another minute, and then add the cream. Heat it up.

Mix the sauce with the gnocchi, adding a little cooking water if necessary.

Serve immediately with grated Parmesan cheese, coarsely ground black pepper and a final drizzle of our olive oil.This dish pairs perfectly with our 2019 Chianti Classico.