Nettle Gnocchi, Speck and Beech Mushrooms

Recipe by Jake Martin of Fenouil Portland

"My first experience with nettles was a nightmare. Digging bare-handed into the bag, I quickly understood why they were called stinging nettles! I like this recipe because it transforms a sometimes painful green into a soft, rich dumpling. The speck emulsion rounds out the vegetal green and gives the dish a meaty kick without compromising the texture. "– Jake Martin, Fenouil Portland


2 pounds of Yukon Gold Potatoes

3 egg yolks

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 pound nettles (picked, blanched, puréed)

1/3 cup canola oil

Boiling,  salted water

4 ounces Speck (diced)

3/4 cup skim milk

1/2 teaspoon Lecithin

1/2 cup whole beech mushrooms

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 1/2 tablespoons minced shallots

1/4 cup water


1.  Bake potatoes on bed of salt at 375ºF until fork-tender 2. Slice potatoes in half and scoop out flesh, rice in food mill 3. In center of riced potatoes, add 1/2 of flour, yolks, rest of flour and nettle puree, saving 2 tablespoons puree for later 4. Using a bench scraper, cut through mixture to combine, but don’t overwork dough, which should be even green color 5. Roll dough into long ropes and cut into 1/2-inch segments using small, sharp knife. 6.  Blanch in boiling, salted water until they rise to the surface. Strain and place on well-oiled sheet pan.


1. Brown speck in small saucepan 2. Add milk and let stand for 15 minutes.3. Strain into narrow container and add lecithin.


1. Sauté Beech Mushrooms in unsalted butter 2. Add Shallot, cook until translucent 3. Add gnocchi and season with salt and pepper 4. Add water and bring to a simmer 5. Add 2 tablespoons nettle purée and stir to combine 6.  Spoon into four pre warmed bowls. 7. Froth speck emulsion with stick blender or whisk and ladle over gnocchi.

Servings: Four

2008 Dominio Viognier


Fenouil’s new executive chef, Jake Martin, was destined to his profession—from washing dishes in his hometown of Arcata, California to becoming one of the Pacific Northwest’s rising star chefs. He has worked in some of Seattle’s most praised kitchens. He credits Chef Ethan Stowell for his first big break: realizing his promising potential, Stowell created a sous chef position for Martin at his renowned restaurant, Union. From there, he prospered as chef de cuisine at Veil restaurant, then as sous chef at Maria Hines’ celebrated restaurant, Tilth. Martin accepted his first executive chef position at Carlyle Restaurant in Portland in 2007. 


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