Monday, 28 April 2008

Noshy Gnocchi

Much as I do love a pasta bake (and plan one for tomorrow evening), I' d never cooked anything with gnocchi until tonight. Tearing a riff on a favourite pasta recipe seemed appropriate, though, so I knocked up some blue cheese sauce and replaced the broccoli with spinach (yum...).

We started with a platter of Antipasti (read: I foraged in the fridge for anything feeling remotely Italianate and laid it all out on my big SYNTES SKISS plate from IKEA. With a glass of breadsticks and another holding celery it was a respectable first course that encouraged the children to try a little of everything, though not to like it all straightaway. As I'd included olives and anchovies, I was not particularly surprised!

Gnocchi with Spinach & Blue Cheese Sauce

The gnocchi I used was 'The Best' from the chiller cabinet at Morrisons. If you'd rather make this into a pasta bake, just substitute an equal amount of cooked pasta (i.e. about 200g -250g dry weight) for the gnocchi and proceed with the rest of the recipe.

30g cornflour
30g butter
1 pint milk

Put all three ingredients into a pan and bring to the boil, whisking all the time.

200g Danish Blue cheese, chopped

When the sauce has thickened, remove it from the heat and stir in the blue cheese, along with some pepper (but no salt)

2 big handfuls spinach leaves, washed
500g pack 'fresh' gnocchi

Wilt the spinach by putting it into a colander and pouring a kettleful of boiling water over it. Squeeze the excess water out with tongs and arrange this with the gnocchi in the bottom of an ovenproof dish. Pour the sauce over, pushing everything down well to cover it.

50g fresh parmesan, grated
50g breadcrumbs

Mix together and sprinkle over the top of the gnocchi. Bake at 200°c for 15-20 minutes until golden on top and bublling around the edges.

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