Mushroom & Crème Fraiche Pasta with Toasted Breadcrumbs

This recipe serves 2.

Ingredients

200grs of pasta, I used tagliatelle

For the mushrooms:

1 ½ tablespoons of olive oil

1 tablespoon of butter

150grs of oyster mushroom or any that you like

2 sprigs of thyme

Pinch of salt

For the sauce:

1 tablespoon of olive oil 

1 shallot, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, minced

1/3 cup of white wine

150grs of creme fraiche

A good pinch of salt

Black pepper to taste

1/3 cup of the pasta water

For the breadcrumbs:

1 tablespoon of olive oil 

1 large sprig of thyme, leaves only 

1/3 cup of Panko

2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast

Pinch of onion powder

Pinch of garlic powder

Pinch of salt 

Start by making your toasted breadcrumbs. Place the olive oil, thyme, panko, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic powder and salt in pan over medium heat. Cook while stirring until the panko is golden. Set aside.

For the mushrooms, depending on which mushroom you are using, cut them or shred them. I used Oyster mushrooms. I just shredded them to make them a bit smaller, but not too much. 

Start cooking the pasta in salted water as instructed on the package. Reserve 1/3 of a cup of the pasta water to add to the sauce later on. 

Place the butter and olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, add the mushrooms, thyme and a pinch of salt. Cook for a few minutes until the mushrooms are golden brown on both sides. Place them in a bowl. If you want, reserve some of them to decorate the plates. I also reserved the thyme sprigs. 

In the same pan where you cooked the mushrooms, add one tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic, and cook for about 1 minutes while stirring. Add the white wine and let it reduce for half a minute. Then add the crème fraiche and the reserved pasta water. Add the drained pasta, mushrooms, salt and pepper. Stir until everything is combined and the sauce has thickened. Taste if it needs any more salt or pepper.

Serve with the reserved mushrooms and thyme. Sprinkle with some of the toasted panko. Enjoy!

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Peach & Gorgonzola Flammkuchen

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When it comes to pizzas, I prefer the ones with a thin crust. I first tried the original flammkuchen at a bar last year and really love it. Since then I make my own at home. This is my peach and Gorgonzola version.

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This recipe makes 4 flammkuchen.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

7grs of dry yeast

1 cup of warm water

Pinch of sugar

2 tablespoons of olive oil

½ teaspoon of salt

2 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

For the toppings:

200gr Crème fraiche

Salt

Pepper

150gr of gorgonzola, crumbled

2 peaches, thinly sliced

2 shallots, thinly sliced

8 strips of smoked bacon, thinly sliced

10 sprigs of fresh thyme

 

Place the warm water, yeast and sugar in the bowl of the stand mixer. Let it stand for 5 minutes.

After the 5 minutes have passed, add the remaining ingredients for the dough. Knead on low speed for 5 minutes using the dough hook attachment.

Then remove the dough from the bowl. Clean the bowl and then grease it with a bit of vegetable oil.  Form the dough into a ball and place it back into the greased bowl. Cover with plastic film and let it rise for 1 hour in a warm place.

Preheat the oven to 230C/446F. Place the oven tray where you are going to bake the pizza in the oven to get hot.

Remove the dough from the bowl and separate it into 4 pieces.

Roll out one of the pieces on a floured surface.  Then place the dough on a sheet of parchment paper.

Spread some of the crème fraiche all over the dough, except for the edges. Sprinkle some salt and pepper. Add the bacon, peach slices, shallots, gorgonzola and thyme.

Remove the hot tray from the oven. Place the flammkuchen with the parchment paper on the tray and bake for 10 minutes.

Repeat for the remaining dough.  Serve immediately.

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Pan-Fried Plantain Gnocchi with Crème Fraiche and Bacon Crumbs

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I wanted to try and make plantain gnocchi for a while now.  But the last time I got plantains; I ended up frying them and eating them with rice and fried eggs. One of those things I used to love eating growing up. It is simple and delicious.

I served these gnocchi with a very simple sauce made with crème fraiche, shallots and garlic, and topped it off with some bacon crumbs and a few thyme leaves.  This recipe serves 3.

Ingredients:

For the Gnocchi:

3 ripe plantains

40gr of Parmesan cheese

1 egg

½ teaspoon of salt

1 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

For the sauce:

1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil

2 shallots, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, minced

200gr crème fraiche

Salt

Pepper

For the bacon crumbs:

5 slices of crispy bacon

Butter and olive oil to pan-fry the gnocchi

A few fresh thyme leaves (optional), to decorate

 

To make the bacon crumbs, just fry the bacon in a pan until crispy. Then place the bacon on a plate lined with a paper towel to absorb most of the fat. Then put the bacon in a food processor and pulse until you get crumbs. Set aside.

Put the unpeeled plantains in an oven tray and bake for 30 minutes at 180C/350F.  Allow to cool down. Then peel them and cut each plantain into 4 pieces and remove the seeds using a knife.  Once all the seeds have been removed, chop them and put them in the food processor and pulse until you get a smooth puree.

Put the plantain puree in a large bowl; add the Parmesan, egg and salt. Mix well with a fork.  Then slowly add the flour.

Once all the flour is incorporated, Place 1/6 of the dough on a floured surface and start rolling it as if it were a long snake. Then cut it into small pieces of about 2cm/1inch. Roll them in the palm of your hands to give them more shape. They don’t have to be perfect.  Put the finished gnocchi aside and continue with the rest of the dough.

Once all of the gnocchi is done, drop them into a large pot of boiling salted water. When they start floating around in the top, give them an extra minute and then drain them using a colander.

To make the sauce, heat up the olive oil in a small pan over medium-low heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook for a few minutes. Then add the crème fraiche and cook for another minute stirring. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Going back to the gnocchi, you’ll have to pan-fry them in batches.  In order to get a nice even golden color you can’t to overcrowd the pan.

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large nonstick pan, over medium heat. Add about ½ of the boiled gnocchi and fry them until they have a light brown crust on both sides.  Then remove from the heat and repeat for the remaining gnocchi.

To plate the gnocchi, place a bit of the crème fraiche sauce on a plate. Then add the gnocchi and top with some of the bacon crumbs and a few thyme leaves.

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