5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
2 pounds chicken tenderloins, diced into bite-size pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons butter, divided
12 large white mushrooms, sliced
1 cup shredded carrots
4 ribs celery from the heart, very thinly sliced
1-2 fresh bay leaves
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock, divided
1 cup basil leaves
A generous handful of parsley leaves
1 clove garlic
A handful of pine nuts, lightly toasted
A couple of handfuls of grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1 lemon, zested
2 packages fresh gnocchi (10-12 ounces)
Place a large pot of water on to boil for the gnocchi.
Heat a pot with 1 tablespoon EVOO, one turn of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, then season with salt and pepper and lightly brown. Remove to a plate and add another tablespoon of EVOO and 2 tablespoons butter and heat. Add the mushrooms, carrots, celery and 1-2 fresh bay leaves, then season with salt and pepper. Soften for 5 minutes, sprinkle in the flour and cook for 2 minutes. Whisk in 2 1/2 cups stock, slide the chicken back into the pot and simmer to allow the sauce to thicken.
Place the remaining 1/2 cup stock in a food processor with the basil, parsley, garlic, pine nuts, cheese, salt and pepper. Turn the processor on and pour in the remaining few tablespoons EVOO.
Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a skillet over medium heat with the zest of 1 lemon.
Salt the cooking water and drop the gnocchi in the water. Cook until the gnocchi floats, drain and add to the lemon butter and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Toss the gnocchi for 2-3 minutes in the lemon butter until light golden at the edges.
Turn the heat off the chicken and stir in the pesto sauce. Serve the chicken in shallow bowls and top with lemon butter dumplings.