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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Pumpkin Gnocchi with Mushroom-Chestnut Sauce


I like to watch the cooking shows even though I can't really eat anything they feature. But watching these programs gets my creative juices flowing. So, this past week, when I was catching up on "The Taste" and someone make gnocchi.

Right now, I'm trying to eat a diet low in oxalic acid (it seems to be helping to some degree, my blood pressure and blood sugar, both of which were sky-high, have come down a bit). So, potatoes and sweet potatoes, both of which are high in oxalic acid, are out, but pumpkin, which is low in oxalic acid, is in.

Most grains are out, oats are medium, though, and oat bran is low. So, when I remembered that our local Shop-Rite sold oat bran flour, I started stocking up. I've tried it in cakes (dense but delicious) and bread (lighter, but not terribly tasty, unfortunately).

So, when the spirit moved me to try gnocchi, I took a container of pumpkin puree, added my favorite spices (chili powder, smoked paprika, coriander, cumin, ginger) and added oat bran flour. I made a somewhat sticky dough (using a spoon, not my hands) and remembered that oats have a tendency to get denser the longer they sit. So I let the dough sit for a few hours.

When I got back to the dough, it was a good consistency. I boiled up some filtered water (with the above mentioned spices and a pinch of himalayan salt), wet my hand so the dough wouldn't stick too much, and shaped the dough into rounds, put a thumbprint in the center, and dropped them into the boiling water. Making sure they didn't stick to the bottom of the pot, I boiled them until they floated to the top, then cooked them for one more minute. I used a small strainer to remove them from the pot (you can also use a slotted spoon). I repeated this until I had used all the dough.

For the sauce, I sauteed up lot of different kinds of mushrooms with a bad of pre-cooked chestnuts (also with the same spiced). I then put the well sauteed mushroom mix with 1/4 cup cashew "milk" in the food processor and add filtered water as it's processing until it gets processed and to the consistency that you like (I like it thick).

It tastes best when they are both warm, but I like to nibble on it cold also.

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