Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Gnocchi with Cheese Sauce, Green Asparagus and Fried Speck Slivers

This is the finished dish after it's gone through the oven until it's golden, yummy!

  • potato gnocchi : avge 150g/serving (buy ready-made), 500 g minimum for 4 persons
  •  Swiss cheese: 200 g (half a cup) grated

  •  Parmigiano cheese: 2 or 3 tablespoons, grated
  • green asparagus: at least one dozen asparagus boiled in salted water: reserve one cup of the cooking liquid
  • 100 g of Speck ham
  • One cup milk  (skim milk if your prefer)

1. Make the cheese sauce using one cup of the asparagus cooking liquid and one cup of milk. This cheese sauce does not need to be done with butter (better for your health, fewer calories!)
  • Start with a big tablespoon of flour in one cup of cold milk + one cup of the asparagus cooking liquid - 
  • bring to a boil (keep whipping so it won't attach to the pan and comes out smooth) - 
  • boil 5 minutes to do away with the flour taste - 
  • then add 200 g of grated Swiss cheese, salt and pepper, grated nutmeg to taste. 
2. Prepare the ingredients that go into the cheese sauce:
  • cut the asparagus in small pieces, discarding any bit that is fibrous or hard
  • fry the ham in a pan (use teflon, don't add any oil) until crisp then break it up in small pieces 
  • Mix the above ingredients in the cheese sauce
3. Prepare a pyrex dish (or anything that goes in the oven) for your gnocchi: butter it and spread a little of the cheese sauce on the bottom

4. Cook the gnocchi in boiling water, lightly salted. As soon as they float up to the surface, take them out of the water with a slotted spoon and deposit in the pyrex dish.

5. Cover with cheese sauce and sprinkle grated parmigiano over the whole dish

6. Stick in a warm oven for 5 minutes then turn on the grill for a couple of minutes to brown.

That's it!

Enhanced by Zemanta

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year Hodge Pot, the Recipe You Need on January 1st!

You know how you feel on January 1st, the day after? Nay, the week after having eaten far, far too much every day since Christmas Eve and you've got all those left-overs in the fridge? Yes, that's right - awful! No way you're going to cook today. So here's one easy solution:

Recipe: Everything left over in your fridge, vegetable-wise, cut-up in bite-size pieces. If you haven't got enough veggies, integrate with a ready-made minestrone from your supermarket, either frozen or semi-fresh (one cup will do).  

Leave out the rat (remember Three Men in a Boat? The dog's contribution to the men's Irish stew had been a rat he'd fished in the Thames...) 

Add one cup of broth to taste (made from cubes or Knorr powder or whatever), ground pepper, a spoonful of fresh chopped parsley (optional). 

Be sure to add two or three tablespoonfuls of fresh tomato purée - what the Italians call "passata di pomodoro". Lacking that, cut up a few cherry tomatoes in your soup, they'll add a necessary zing to it.

Serve with grated Parmigiano cheese and a piece of warmed up bread. And red wine of course.

Et voilà, the perfect New Year Day Hodge podge, I mean Hodge Pot!
Enhanced by Zemanta