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Alternative Christmas menu: first courses

Looking for gluten-free or vegan (or both) recipes for your holiday menu? Cucina Mancina gives us two simple recipes bursting with seasonal flavours and a Christmas look.
Chickpea soup with spicy chestnut, rosemary, crispy potato and beets by Cristina Saglietti, food blogger
Chickpea soup with spicy chestnut, rosemary, crispy potato and beets by Cristina Saglietti, food blogger
 

Chickpea soup with spicy chestnut, rosemary, crispy potato and beets

Author: Cristina Saglietti, food blogger Ingredients For the chickpea soup - 800 g boiled chickpeas - 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil - warm water - salt and black pepper For the spicy chestnut with rosemary - n. 20 boiled chestnuts without their skins - a sprig fresh rosemary - 1 dried red pepper For the crispy potato - 1 large potato - 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil For the decoration - 1 baked beet - 4 sprigs fresh rosemary - 1 dried red pepper - black salt Preparation - Peel the roasted beets and cut into slices. - Cut into small stars with a biscuit cutter. - Set aside the beets at room temperature, covered with plastic wrap. - Blend the boiled chickpeas, adding extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and water to make a very soft and smooth cream. - Warm up the chickpea soup at very low heat. - In a pan heat the extra virgin olive oil with a sprig of fresh rosemary and chopped red pepper. Sautè the boiled chestnuts (you can cut some chestnuts and let other whole). Set aside. - Cut the potato in thin strips and fry them in a little oil. The potato strips should be crisp and golden but not too dark. - Once cooked, arrange them on paper towels to absorb excess oil. - Compose the dish by placing two ladles of chickpeas, spicy chestnuts with rosemary and the crispy potatoes. - Decorate with the baked beet stars, crystals of black salt, the sprig of fresh rosemary and bits of red pepper. - Serve piping hot.
Buckwheat and nettle pasta with cauliflower and citrus fruits
Buckwheat and nettle pasta with cauliflower and citrus fruits

Buckwheat and nettle pasta with cauliflower and citrus fruits

Author: Paolo and Gaia, chef and food therapist Photo credits: Benedetta Marchi Ingredients - 500 g. of buckwheat and nettle pasta - 1/4 white or green cauliflower (medium size) - 2 tablespoons of green and black olives - 1 tablespoon of capers - grated zest of one lemon - zest of an orange, cut into curls - extra virgin olive oil - salt Preparation - Cut the cauliflower into small pieces. - Bring a big pot of water to a boil and cook the cauliflower for 9 minutes maximum. - With a skimmer, remove the cauliflower and cook the pasta in the same water. - Finely chop the olives and capers. - Drain the pasta and combine with the olives, capers, cauliflower, the grated zest of orange and lemon. - Decorate your dish with orange peel, cut into curls. Recipes from Cucina Mancina, the first web community for people eating alternative foods.