Stella and I made it out to the Ballard market this past foggy sunday. The fog was so thick I couldn't see the water from 99. Almost eerie.
The market was lively. Sheela and I wandered around browsing, tasting cheese, wondering why mushrooms would be called "fried chicken" (because they look greasy). Sheela bought some "desirae" potatoes from the potato man. "If you like yukons, you'll love these." I bought huckleberry mushrooms (smaller, a bit yellow) and shallots. Sheela bought "valentina" gruyere from Estrella creamery (named after the cow with the heart on her face). I bought a handful of brussel sprouts.
Then we bought tamales and sat outside the coffee shop watching the kids dance to the trombone player. While we were eating, Sheela spotted the pasta place, an Italian flag hanging outside. They spoke broken english with a thick Italian accent and had a poster with something about Sicily. I bought gnocchi.
I love gnocchi. My roomate in college used to make them on cold November evenings, mixing them with a tomato- mascarpone sauce. They taste of comfort.
Cobe was home staring at complicated financial tables when I got back, the fog still enveloping our front deck. I started chopping and soon we had dinner, very rustic Italian, like what you might find in the countryside.
Make this when you have good mushrooms. And can get your hands on some real gnocchi (or make them yourself).
Gnocchi en brodo con rucola e funghi
(Gnocchi in broth with arugula and mushrooms)
(adapted from Epicurious)
2 T. olive oil
2 large shallots, chopped
1/2 pound mushrooms (wild or cremini), chopped
1.5 cups chicken/turkey broth (homemade or swanson's organic)
1 cup dry white wine
1 T. fresh chopped sage
2 handfuls arugula (can sub baby spinach)
1/2 # gnocchi (enough for 2 people)
fresh ground pepper
parmigiano reggiano for the top
Heat pan over medium-high heat, add butter and olive oil. Heat 1 minute till golden, then add shallots. Saute until translucent, add mushrooms. Increase heat to high, saute 10 minutes until beginning to brown (will need to cook off liquid from mushrooms). Add broth, wine and sage, simmer for 8 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Meanwhile cook the gnocchi (only take about 1-2 minutes, just until they rise to the top). Add gnocchi to the pan, heat through. Add handfuls of arugula and heat through til wilted. Serve with grated reggiano and a few drops of truffle oil.