Gnocchi with Lamb and Pork Ragù with Fresh Ricotta

For Chef Alex Seidel’s Gnocchi with Lamb Ragù recipe, Seidel sources the potatoes from Jones Farms Organics, located in the San Luis Valley. Potatoes, the primary ingredient in the gnocchi, take advantage of the winter’s stores of root vegetables. But the subtle sweetness of spring lamb and the brightness from the lemon zest in the gremolata remind us that spring has arrived.

Gnocchi with Lamb and Pork Ragù with Fresh Ricotta

Recipe courtesy of Chef Alex Seidel and Matt Vawter (executive chef of Mercantile)

GNOCCHI

(Makes about 150 gnocchi. Uncooked gnocchi can be frozen and used later.)

2 cups 00 flour
8 golden potatoes, simmered whole with skin on and peeled after fully cooked. DO NOT SALT the water.
1 teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon white pepper
⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
2 eggs

Using a potato ricer, rice the peeled potatoes and lay flat to dry on a board or counter.

Dust with 00 flour.

Season with salt, white pepper and nutmeg.

Bring together with your hands, make a well in the center, crack eggs into well.

Mix thoroughly with your hands until ingredients come together.

Build the dough by kneading for approximately 5 minutes. Dough should feel soft and smooth. Be careful not to overwork the dough. To make the gnocchi, cut the dough into pieces and roll the dough into a ¾-inch to 1-inch-thick ropes. The thicker the rope the heavier the gnocchi. Using a pastry cutter cut the rope into 1-inch pieces.

LAMB AND PORK RAGÙ SAUCE RECIPE

(Serves 4)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound ground lamb
1 pound ground pork
2 celery stalks, small dice
1 onion, small dice
2 carrot, small dice
¼ cup white wine
2 quarts canned tomato
1 tablespoon oregano
3 tablespoon tomato paste

Salt and pepper, to taste. In a large pot over medium heat, heat oil. Add onion, carrots and celery; cook until soft, 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more. Add lamb and pork; cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, 6 minutes.

Add white wine and cook until mostly reduced, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and oregano, and season with salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for 1 hour. Season with more salt and pepper to taste.

GREMOLATA

1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 teaspoon minced lemon zest

Mix ingredients together

ASSEMBLY

To assemble, you’ll need 28 pieces of the gnocchi from above. Preheat a large saucepan on the stove. Coat the bottom of the pan with vegetable oil and begin to sauté the gnocchi. Flip and turn the gnocchi until they are golden brown.

Add the lamb ragù and warm through.

Finish with gremolata and 3 ounces of Fruition Farms Dairy & Creamery fresh ricotta.

Chef Alex Seidel has been a prominent fixture in the Denver culinary community since 2007, when he opened his first restaurant, Fruition. A 2018 James Beard Award winner and proponent of good food for all, Seidel owns several restaurants, including Fruition, Mercantile and Chook Chicken, and is also co-owner of Fruition Farms. The 10-acre farm is home to hogs, chickens, several greenhouses and a cheesemaking facility. Chef Alex and his culinary team incorporate the bounty of ingredients produced on the farm in many of his restaurants’ signature dishes.

Matt Vawter is executive chef of Mercantile.

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