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Posts Tagged ‘Gnocchi’

Baked gnocchi with broccoli, blue cheese and walnuts

We won’t apologise for yet another blue cheese-themed dish. We love cheese but are unlikely to have a cheese course during the week and therefore regularly end up making a meal out of it. Tis also the season for copious amounts of cheese, which is not only delicious but expensive – don’t waste it. If you’ve eaten all the blue cheese then brie or goats’ cheese should also work well.

Wine Suggestion: You need to balance the richness of the dish and the salty cheese so we chose the 2007 Ridge Santa Cruz Chardonnay which, despite it’s 10 years of age, was fresh and vibrant. The developing character of old Chardonnay really works well with blue cheese, especially when cooked in a dish. We also toyed with opening some white Rhône as this would work too.

Baked Gnocchi with Broccoli & Blue Cheese – serves 4

  • 500g fresh gnocchi
  • 200g tenderstem broccoli
  • 150g dolcelatte or other creamy blue cheese, crumbled
  • 150ml single cream

Heat the oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5.

Cook the gnocchi in a large pan of boiling water. It’s ready when it floats to the surface, scoop out with a draining spoon.

Cook the broccoli in the same water until just tender, then drain.

Mix the gnocchi, broccoli, cheese and cream together in a large bowl with plenty of seasoning. Tip into a buttered baking dish and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden and bubbling.

Serve with salad if you like.

(Original recipe from BBC Olive Magazine, December, 2011.)

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Blue cheese gnocchi

We’ve been seeing more good quality pre-prepared fresh gnocchi around and it’s really handy for a quick dinner. Here’s how to make it tasty with some blue cheese and spinach.

Wine Suggestion: this was a little tricky given blue cheese’s affinity for sweet wine, and we didn’t want this with our meal. A glass of Oloroso sherry was considered but we ended up with a Puglian Primitivo-Nero do Troia blend from Michele Biancardi which is both savoury and fruity. The fruity, plummy sweetness was the foil for the cheese and the savoury tannins played a dance with the gnocchi and spinach.

Blue Cheese Gnocchi – serves 4

  • 500g fresh gnocchi
  • 250g bag baby spinach
  • 100ml/3½ fl oz crème fraîche
  • 4 tbsp grated parmesan
  • 100g blue cheese – a soft variety would be good but use whatever you have

Cook the gnocchi in a large pan of boiling salted water according to the timings on the pack. Stir the spinach into the pan with the gnocchi, then immediately drain in a colander and shake well to get rid of the water.

Put the crème fraîche and grated Parmesan into a small ovenproof dish. Add the hot, drained gnocchi and spinach and stir. Crumble the blue cheese over and season with black pepper.

Put the dish under a hot grill until the cheese is bubbling and golden.

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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Spinach & ricotta gnocchi

We’re not even sure if these can officially be called gnocchi but they’re easy and very tasty. They look pretty awful before they’re cooked and we were a bit worried that they would disintegrate altogether when they hit the water. All was well.

Wine Suggestion: These were a superb match with the Sartarelli  “Tralivio” Verdicchio we had open which was great. Sartarelli specialise solely in Verdicchio and it shows with a wine of great depth, personality and balance. There is a nuttiness to the aroma and taste which works with the earthy spinach and the balance of fruit complements the ricotta.

Spinach & Ricotta Gnocchi – serves 4

  • 200g young spinach
  • small handful of parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 140g ricotta
  • 85g plain flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g freshly grated Parmesan, plus extra to serve
  • freshly grated nutmeg
  • olive oil and rocket to serve

Put the spinach into a large bowl and pour boiling water over it. Leave for a couple of minutes until wilted, then drain. Leave to cool, then wrap in a clean tea towel. Squeeze out as much water as possible, then finely chop.

Put the spinach, parsley, garlic, ricotta, flour, eggs, cheese and a generous grating of nutmeg into a large bowl and season. Stir with a fork until completely mixed. Use wet hands to make walnut-size balls. Put the gnocchi on a large plate and put in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

When ready to cook, heat the oven to warm and bring a large pot of water to the boil. Reduce the heat to medium and drop in batches of gnocchi, about 8-10 at a time. They will sink to the bottom at first and when they rise to the top you should cook for another minute, then remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm while you cook the rest.

Serve with a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of Parmesan and some rocket.

(Original recipe from BBC Good Food)

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Gnocchi with peas

Gnocchi – where have you been all our lives? So much easier than we anticipated!

Wine suggestion: We tried a delicious Langhe Nebbiolo by Luigi Pira from Piedmont in Italy which had a great balance between light weight, depth of flavour, dancing acidity and a characterful earthiness. Gnocchi is refined and elegant but also earthy and rustic and the food-wine combo matched really well.

Gnocchi – serves 4

  • 2 large floury potatoes
  • 50g ricotta cheese
  • 90g plain flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 thyme sprig, leaves only
  • sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • Grated Parmesan – to serve

For the Sauce: 

  • olive oil
  • black pepper
  • 150g frozen peas, defrosted
  • butter
  • 1 thyme sprig, leaves only
  • zest of 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6.

Bake the potatoes for 1-1¼ hours until tender. While the potatoes are still warm, remove the flesh from the skin and mash until smooth (use a potato ricer if you have one).

Mix in the ricotta, a pinch of salt and white pepper and the flour. Make a well in the middle, add the beaten egg and start to combine the mixture with floured hands. Work in the thyme leaves and continue until you have a smooth dough but don’t overwork or it will become too dense .

Cut the dough in half and shape each piece into a long cigar shape about 1.5 cm thick. Use the back of a floured table knife to cut each length into 2cm pieces to make ‘pillows’ of gnocchi.

Gently press each gnocchi in the middle with a floured finger.

Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Add the gnocchi, tilting the pan from side to side briefly to stop them sticking together, them simmer for just 1½-2 minutes or until they start to float.

Drain the gnocchi and leave to steam dry for a couple of minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over a medium heat and add a bit of olive oil. Add the gnocchi to the hot pan with a pinch of salt and black pepper and sauté for a minute or two on each side until coloured.

Add the peas to the pan with a knob of butter and the thyme leaves. Toss to heat through, then add the lemon zest. Serve with the grated Parmesan.

(Original recipe from Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Cookery Course, Hodder & Stoughton, 2012.)

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