Mixed Root Vegetable Gnocchi in Sage-Pistachio Pesto

Alessandra Seiter

Vegan gnocchi

Makes a whole lotta gnocchi.

  1. For the pesto:
  2. 2 shallots, minced
  3. 10 leaves of fresh sage, minced
  4. 1 tbsp coconut oil
  5. 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  6. 2 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
  7. 1 tbsp fresh parsley
  8. 1 tbsp tahini
  9. 1 cup shelled pistachios
  10. 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  11. Olive oil to thin, as needed
  12. For the gnocchi:
  13. 1/2 of a butternut squash, seeded
  14. 2 large beets, peeled
  15. 1 medium sweet potato, peeled
  16. 1 medium celeriac, peeled
  17. 1 large parsnip, peeled
  18. 1 medium turnip, peeled
  19. 4-6 cups brown rice flour, divided, plus more for dusting

Combining quintessential autumnal flavors—sage, maple syrup, cinnamon—with an array of multi-colored root vegetables, this perfect fall entrée is sophisticated comfort food at its finest. While the combination of root vegetables produces an aesthetically striking dish, it does complicate the process a bit. If you’d like to make the recipe simpler, simply use one root vegetable instead of all six.

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Wrap the beets, sweet potato, celeriac, parsnip, and turnip each individually in aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet. Place the butternut squash, face-down, on the baking sheet, as well. Roast all of the veggies for 45-60 minutes until you can pierce through them with a fork. Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle.

Meanwhile, make the pesto. Heat the coconut oil over medium-high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the shallots and sage. Sauté for 5-10 minutes, or until golden brown. Add the sauté to a food processor along with the rest of the pesto ingredients, except for the olive oil. Pulse until well combined, scraping down the sides as necessary. As the motor is running, drizzle in olive oil to achieve the desired consistency.

Set a large pot of salted water to boil.

Once the veggies have cooled, puree each of them separately in a food processor (or mash them separately with a potato masher) and place the purees into separate bowls. Make sure that you process the beets last so as not to stain the other veggie purees with a magenta hue. Combine the purees of celeriac, turnip, and parsnip. You’ll have four bowls of puree in front of you: one deep orange (butternut squash), one light orange (sweet potato), one magenta (beet), and one white (celeriac, turnip, and parsnip). Combine each of the purees with 1 cup of brown rice flour, adding more to each bowl to achieve an ever-so-slightly sticky consistency (the butternut squash and sweet potato purees will require less than the others).

Dust a work surface with additional flour. Divide each dough into two portions and roll them into snakes about 1/2-inch in width. Cut each snake into 10-20 gnocchi and place in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Once the pot of water is boiling, drop the gnocchi—ten at a time and only with gnocchi of like color—into the pot. Cook until the gnocchi floats to the top, about 30 seconds. Remove the gnocchi from the water and place in a colander sitting over a bowl to allow the water to drain.

Combine all of the gnocchi in a large bowl (at this point, the boiling will have sealed their color, so it’s safe to combine them). Add the pesto and stir well to coat. Serve warm.

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