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New Zealand Warrigal Greens Gnocchi

New Zealand Warrigal Greens Gnocchi

Warrigal Greens Gnocchi

It may have a strange name, but this dish is a great way to showcase a lesser known ingredient with a unique taste.

Warrigal greens a.k.a. New Zealand Spinach or tetragonia tetragonioides is a creeper that can be found near certain coastal areas of Australia, New Zealand and a few other Pacific nations.

A weed to some, and often eaten after Captain Cook spotted the green leaves growing on shore in 1769. Fresh, vitamin-rich food wasn’t all that abundant on the explorers ships during the long journeys – not that vitamins were known about back then – so little did they know that they were fighting off scurvy by eating the cooked warrigal greens.

Warrigal Greens Gnocchi with Black Garlic

Warrigal Greens Gnocchi with Black Garlic

I know you can buy it from certain providers, but I have of a few places near home where I can pick it safely, legally and responsibly. Most importantly, if you choose to forage yourself, make sure you know what you’re picking!

You can liken warrigal greens to spinach, but it must be blanched for 3 minutes before you eat it, to kill off the oxalic acid. Too easy.

I adore the fresh, green color of the gnocchi I’ve made, and keeping it simple by tossing it in browned butter, black garlic and parmesan, the flavors aren’t over-complicated. The sweet, smokiness the black garlic brings is magical – love the stuff.

For a final adornment, I’ve used some leaves and flowers from native violet. Completely edible and rather pretty. And I love that my city council planted loads of them right in front of my house. Bonus!

See Also
Italian Amaretti Cookies

FACTS:

– Warrigal Greens are known as “New Zealand Spinach.”

– If you can’t find Warrigal Greens, you can substitute any leafy greens (like spinach) for the amount of Warrigal Greens in the recipe

– Warrigal Greens contain a small amount of oxalic acid that causes a metallic, bitter taste and can be harmful if ingested in great quantities. Blanch your Warrigal Greens for 3 – 4 minutes before cooking or consuming.

How To Make Warrigal Greens Gnocchi

1. Prepping the Greens:

  • First, rinse the warrigal greens thoroughly.
  • Prepare a large mixing bowl with cold water and about two cups of ice cubes.
  • In a pot, boil some water and blanch the greens for about 3 minutes.
  • Immediately transfer the greens to the iced water to halt the cooking process, ensuring they maintain their vibrant color. Set these aside.

2. Steaming the Potatoes:

  • Keep the pot of water you used for blanching. Place the potatoes in a bamboo steamer or steamer bowl above this pot.
  • Steam the potatoes for 20-30 minutes. They’re ready when a skewer easily pierces through to the center. Once done, set aside.

3. Preparing the Green Paste:

  • Drain and squeeze out any excess water from the blanched greens.
  • With a stick blender or food processor, process the greens into a thick paste.
  • Introduce the eggs and the extra yolk to this paste and combine well.

4. Making the Gnocchi Dough:

  • While still warm, peel the steamed potatoes and discard the skin.
  • Use a ricer or a fine grater to mash the potatoes into a large mixing bowl.
  • Blend in the warrigal greens paste gently. Avoid over-mixing.
  • Incorporate the flour and salt, mixing just until a dough forms. If it’s sticky, sparingly add flour.

5. Shaping the Gnocchi:

  • Prep a board or tray with baking paper.
  • Flour your workspace lightly and transfer the gnocchi dough to it.
  • Divide the dough into quarters. Roll each portion into a log, roughly the width of your thumb. Then, cut into 2 cm (3/4 inch) long dumplings.
  • Lay the gnocchi on the prepared tray, ensuring they’re spaced out to avoid sticking.

6. Cooking the Gnocchi:

  • Boil salted water in a pot. Introduce the gnocchi. They’re ready in 2-3 minutes, floating to the top with a soft-yet-firm texture.
  • (Optional) Instead of immediate cooking, you can refrigerate the dough-covered gnocchi for up to 3 days or freeze and cook later.

7. Serving the Gnocchi:

  • In a skillet, melt butter on medium-high heat. Add black garlic and pepper.
  • Cook until the butter adopts a golden-brown hue. Stay vigilant to prevent burning.
  • Toss in the cooked gnocchi, ensuring they’re coated in the butter-garlic mix.
  • Season with salt. Transfer to plates and garnish with reggiano shavings, herbs, and optional edible flowers. Serve immediately.
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New Zealand Warrigal Greens Gnocchi


5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 4 reviews

  • Author: John Bek
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Description

It may have a strange name, but this dish is a great way to showcase a lesser known ingredient with a unique taste.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1/3 cup (150 g) warrigal greens, leaves only (or spinach)
  • 2 eggs (plus 1 egg yolk)
  • 2/3 lbs (300 g) Russet potatoes, skin on
  • 1 1/3 cup (165 g) plain flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Himalayan salt (finely ground)
  • 4/5 stick (80 g) butter
  • 45 cloves black garlic (finely sliced)
  • Black pepper (freshly milled)
  • Parmigiano Reggiano (finely shaved, to taste)
  • Micro herbs & edible flowers (optional)

Instructions

1. Prepping the Greens:

  • First, rinse the warrigal greens thoroughly.
  • Prepare a large mixing bowl with cold water and about two cups of ice cubes.
  • In a pot, boil some water and blanch the greens for about 3 minutes.
  • Immediately transfer the greens to the iced water to halt the cooking process, ensuring they maintain their vibrant color. Set these aside.

2. Steaming the Potatoes:

  • Keep the pot of water you used for blanching. Place the potatoes in a bamboo steamer or steamer bowl above this pot.
  • Steam the potatoes for 20-30 minutes. They’re ready when a skewer easily pierces through to the center. Once done, set aside.

3. Preparing the Green Paste:

  • Drain and squeeze out any excess water from the blanched greens.
  • With a stick blender or food processor, process the greens into a thick paste.
  • Introduce the eggs and the extra yolk to this paste and combine well.

4. Making the Gnocchi Dough:

  • While still warm, peel the steamed potatoes and discard the skin.
  • Use a ricer or a fine grater to mash the potatoes into a large mixing bowl.
  • Blend in the warrigal greens paste gently. Avoid over-mixing.
  • Incorporate the flour and salt, mixing just until a dough forms. If it’s sticky, sparingly add flour.

5. Shaping the Gnocchi:

  • Prep a board or tray with baking paper.
  • Flour your workspace lightly and transfer the gnocchi dough to it.
  • Divide the dough into quarters. Roll each portion into a log, roughly the width of your thumb. Then, cut into 2 cm (3/4 inch) long dumplings.
  • Lay the gnocchi on the prepared tray, ensuring they’re spaced out to avoid sticking.

6. Cooking the Gnocchi:

  • Boil salted water in a pot. Introduce the gnocchi. They’re ready in 2-3 minutes, floating to the top with a soft-yet-firm texture.
  • (Optional) Instead of immediate cooking, you can refrigerate the dough-covered gnocchi for up to 3 days or freeze and cook later.

7. Serving the Gnocchi:

    • In a skillet, melt butter on medium-high heat. Add black garlic and pepper.
    • Cook until the butter adopts a golden-brown hue. Stay vigilant to prevent burning.
    • Toss in the cooked gnocchi, ensuring they’re coated in the butter-garlic mix.
    • Season with salt. Transfer to plates and garnish with reggiano shavings, herbs, and optional edible flowers. Serve immediately.

Notes

Warrigal Greens are known as “New Zealand Spinach.”
If you can’t find Warrigal Greens, you can substitute any leafy greens (like Spinach!) for the amount of Warrigal Greens in the recipe
Warrigal Greens contain a small amount of oxalic acid that causes a metallic, bitter taste and can be harmful if ingested in great quantities. Blanch your Warrigal Greens for 3 – 4 minutes before cooking or consuming.

  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 5 mins
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Boiling
  • Cuisine: Italian
View Comments (4)
  • Can’t believe there are no comments. Have made this recipe sooo many times and just had to say thank you. Absolutely adore it. It’s our go-to to impress visitors. ? best recipe for warrigal greens.






  • Wow, this was incredible! I didn’t find warrigal greens here in the US, but used baby spinach instead and it was absolutely delicious. I can’t say my presentation was as good as this one, but it did absolutely looked pretty with some fresh herbs and olive oil drizzled over it. Full score!






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