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Brian Ellis Visits The Daily Meal and Shares His Potato-Free Gnocchi Recipe

Brian Ellis Visits The Daily Meal and Shares His Potato-Free Gnocchi Recipe

Chef Brian Ellis of The Smith and Jane Restaurant prepared menu favorites for guests to enjoy

Kristen Hom

Ellis’ visit came with news of a fourth Smith restaurant opening in NoMad.

Chef Brian Ellis, executive chef at The Smith and Jane Restaurant, visited The Daily Meal kitchen last night to prepare some menu highlights and other delicious bites. Chef Ellis worked as the chef de cuisine at Jane Restaurant when it first opened in 2003 and was the first executive chef at the first Smith restaurant when it opened in 2007 in the East Village.

Ellis revealed news of a fourth Smith restaurant opening in NoMad, as well as a D.C. On cooking for guests at live events, Chef Ellis says, “It’s different. I can definitely do a better job at it [because] I never get a chance to. [I]t’s always great to get feedback. Negative, positive — it just keeps me going.”

Chef Ellis showed guests how he prepared the mouthwatering ricotta gnocchi with a white truffle crema topped with Parmigiano-Reggiano during a cooking demonstration while answering questions from guests. His version is made with ricotta cheese instead of potato for a “fluffier” and “doughier” product. The batter is put into a piping bag and cut as the dough is piped out instead of rolling out the gnocchi, “like grandma used to do,” says Chef Ellis. The gnocchi are boiled in salt and water, and after they float to the top they are skimmed off and sautéed in a pan with extra virgin olive oil to give the gnocchi a ‘frico’ texture.

Chef Ellis and team prepared a variety of small bites, several of which appear at his restaurants. Highlights include crab cakes topped with an Alabama sauce and apple chutney; spicy salmon tartare featuring rice cake, Sriracha, and soy caramel; and the tuna poke, served in a spoon with cashews, yuzu, and mango. All fish for the restaurants is caught locally, and oysters are shipped directly from oyster farmers that the restaurants work with. Guests sipped on beverage director of Smith restaurants David Kravitz’s Sicilian Kiss Signature Cocktail, which featured prosecco and blood orange. For dessert, guests enjoyed s’mores in small dessert glasses and Turkey Hill gelato was served at the bar as a special treat.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


Updated: 20:00 BST, 19 November 2011

A new book of no-problem recipes from the one-time queen of clean is a family-inspired delight

Mmmum's the word for this prizewinning shortbread (scroll below for the recipe)

Before Aggie MacKenzie pulled on her Marigolds to confront the nation’s
dirty secrets in the alarming TV soap-and-water opera How Clean is Your House?, she was more likely to be found up to her elbows in flour. As a former head of the Good Housekeeping Institute – and a self-confessed baking fanatic – her first love is food, so putting together a cookbook is something she’s dreamed of doing for a long time.

The result is a collection of everyday crowd-pleasers (one recipe is called no-hassle gnocchi, another no-fuss queen of puddings) which have kept Aggie and her family contented around the kitchen table over the years. And it really is a family affair, with ideas from her two sons, Rory and Ewan, a venerable aunt, ‘my cousin’s lovely ex-wife’, assorted friends, granny the ‘legendary’ scone-maker, and even her ex-husband Matthew, whose meatballs with pasta Aggie says she would choose as her last supper. ‘He’s lovely – we’re still really good friends.’

But pride of place must go to Aggie’s mother, whose fondly remembered recipes from a Scottish childhood (beef stew and dumplings, mince and tatties, scotch broth) include this ‘award-winning shortbread’, a name not lightly bestowed. ‘Whenever there was a country show when we were growing up, my mum would always be asked to enter her bakes for the competitions. The shortbread won first prize every time.’

My mum’s award-winning shortbread

The trick is to shape it, leaving a gap between the edge and the rim of the tin, then bake until it’s golden, taking it as far as you can without over-browning.


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