Monday, November 2, 2009

beet gnochhi and beating my head against the wall

Two days without the internet.

It was hell people, hell. A lonely, alienating, god forsaken hell in which I had only SeaBass for company and he is far too happy and energetic for me to deal with on a permanent basis without the blogosphere buffer.

Everything is better now, all is right with the world once more. The tech guy has come and gone and I am free to ignore the world around me with abandon.

So of course today I'm totally being unproductive. The procrastination that I would normally have spread out over a few days I've managed to squeeze in to this afternoon. It's actually pretty impressive how much procrastination I've accomplished. Huh, I feel better about myself when I think about it that way - I have managed to streamline two missed days of procrastination in order to bring myself back up to speed.

Hurray for me!

Last week I bought beets at the farmer's market. I've gotta tell you, I've only ever had beets pickled. My parents pickled them, friends of the family pickled them, we always had store bought pickled beets. I didn't even know you could do anything else with them until a couple of years ago. So I bought a few just to see what I could do with them.

I boiled one and ate it just so I could get an idea of what I was dealing with and then did a little looking around at beet recipes. I decided to play on the idea of a beet salad with goat cheese, beef and walnuts and make a beet gnocchi and serve it with steak and a butter sauce.

A couple of notes:
I both boiled and then sauted the boiled gnocchi - it just finished them off well and carmelized the sugars in the beets.
I sauteed my steak on the stovetop - it was delicious, and easy to do. I just did it as I was sauteing the gnocchi.

5 beets cut into quarters
1 tsp olive oil
1/3 cup goat cheese
1/4 cup ricotta
1/2 cup flour

Cooking beets
Heat oven to 400 degrees
Wash beets.
Cut into quarters.
Toss and coat well in a bowl with olive oil and s&p.
Place beets on baking dish.
Roast in oven for about 1/2 hour or until you can pierce the beets easily with a fork.

Put large pot of water on to boil gnocchi.
Mash or puree the roasted beets well in a bowl.
Add goat and ricotta cheese.
Add flour and stir.
If necessary add more flour until the dough is just dry enough that it does not stick to the bowl and holds together. You want to be very careful about how much flour you add. If you are heavy handed with it, your gnocchi will be heavy.
Place dough on floured surface.
Roll out into long thin logs.
Cut logs into 1/2 inch sections.
When your pasta water is boiling salt it well and then add gnochhi in small batches.
Remove gnocchi when they float to the surface of the water (about 30 seconds)

Saute cooked gnocchi

Heat small saute pan with a little olive oil.
In small batches saute the gnocchi about 20--30 seconds on each side.

Striploin steak
pat dry with a paper towel
season with s&p
saute over medium heat about 3 minutes on first side and 2 minutes on the second for rare.
Let rest for 10 minutes.
Slice to serve.

Butter Sauce
1/4 cup shallot diced
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp fresh thyme minced
handful of chopped walnuts

Melt butter in small pot or pan over medium low heat.
Add shallots and saute until softened (2 minutes).
Add thyme.
Continue to cook until butter gains a slightly darker colour.
Toss the gnocchi in sauce.
Reserve some to drizzle over steak on plate.

p.s. I always feel stupid for not taking pictures of the cooking process, especially with this recipe, which I feel is probably coming off confusing. The thing kitchen is yellow - happy, cheery yellow - my mom thought it would brighten the space since it doesn't get a whole lot of sunshine (we have way too many gigantic trees on the property - a whole other topic.) The point is, I can't photograph food in my kitchen. It upsets me. All my pics are taken outside, usually the day after I cook.
Please, please forgive me.

Beet Gnocchi With Steak and Brown Butter Sauce on Foodista


Heiko said...

These beet gnocchi look and sound absolutely delicious! I wish I could grow them, but our soil is no good for root crops. Also here in Italy it's almost impossible to buy them, but I love their flavour.

Don't worry about not doing any how to photos. Great blog. Just found you via Momorie di Angelina.

Heiko said...

Oh, and my wife, who studied in Edinburgh, is now trying to get me to make those bridies from your last post...

Tasty Trix said...

ug, no internet. sympathies. photos look great, no worries. aren't beets neat? realizing that they come in a non-pickled form was quite the revelation for me as well!

Jenn said...

thanks for the support guys...i feel better about it now!

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