Friday, January 28, 2011

Ricotta Gnocchi with Gorgonzola-Red Pepper Cream Sauce

Gnocchi are usually made with either potato or ricotta cheese. I chose to go with ricotta cheese because its faster and much less work then doing potato gnocchi. I had a few friends over for dinner and they all helped in making the dinner a success. The gnocchi with sauce cost about $20, feeds 5 (with leftovers) and takes about 1.5 hours total.

Ricotta Gnocchi
1 lb of whole milk ricotta, strained and drained for 1 hour
2 cups semolina flour (you can use AP flour)
4 eggs
1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons garlic oil with fine chopped garlic pieces

Start a large pot of heavily salted boiling water. For the garlic oil start a small saute pan on low and add 2 teaspoons of chopped fresh garlic and three teaspoons of oil. Let it cook until garlic is softened, about 15 minutes and let cool. Mix all of the ingredients very well in a large bowl. You should have a very soft dough. Scoop out little balls with a spoon and place on a well floured baking sheet. It is easier to work with the dough if your hands are a little wet. Once portioned, roll each piece into a round ball. You can mark them with a fork or just put a little indent into them to give them some design. Place then in the boiling water for about 5 minutes or until tender. Serve immediately and top with the Gorgonzola red pepper sauce.

Gorgonzola - Roasted Red Pepper Cream Sauce
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
3 oz Gongonzola cheese, chunked
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1 roasted red pepper, diced
salt and pepper

In a small Sauce pan add chicken stock on medium and let reduce to half. Add the cream and turn the heat down to medium low. Let that cook for 10 minutes. Add the two cheeses and whisk that into the cream mixture until smooth. Now add the red peppers with some salt and pepper. Let that cook ten more minutes and serve on top of the gnocchi. Top it with some fresh thyme.

Thanks to Dana, Shawn, Brett and Gerri for the wine, help and company. Dana made a great scallop, arugula, lemon and caper salad to compliment the rich gnocchi. We served broccoli rabe as a side dish and we also made some garlic bread with the leftover garlic oil which was perfect for soaking up the Gorgonzola cheese sauce. All in all it was a great meal with great friends. Buon Appetito!

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