Gnocchi with Roquefort Cream
This recipe is one of the traditional methods for making gnocchi in France. It is basically like making a choux paste or cream puff dough. The finished gnocchi are featherlight and irresistible. If you love blue-veined cheese, you'll love this creamy and assertive sauce.
Wine suggestion: Merlot, including a St. Emilion, Pomerol.
1 2/3 cups milk
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups heavy cream
6 ounces Roquefort cheese, crumbled
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer.
Bring the milk, butter, and 3/4 teaspoon salt to a boil over medium heat. As soon as it comes to a boil, add the flour all at once. Reduce the heat to low and mix vigorously with a wooden spoon until it forms a ball and the edges of the pan look sandy. Remove the dough from the pan and place in a bowl. While still warm, with an electric mixer, add the eggs one at a time, beating well with a wooden spoon after each addition. The mixture should be very thick and smooth.
Fit a large pastry bag with a 3/4- to 1-inch plain round tip. Fill the pastry bag with dough. Into the simmering water, squeeze out 1-inch pieces of dough, cutting them with the back of a small knife. Do not overcrowd the pan. Simmer the gnocchi slowly until they begin to puff slightly and are slightly firm, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the gnocchi from the water with a slotted spoon, drain well, and cool.
Note: The gnocchi will keep for up to 2 days in the refrigerator at this stage. They can also be frozen. Make sure that they are at room temperature before proceeding to the next step.
Preheat the oven to 425°F. In a large saucepan, bring the cream, Roquefort, salt, and pepper to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and reduce the cream by one-quarter until it thickens slightly, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the Roquefort cream to the gnocchi and mix carefully. Place the gnocchi and sauce in a 13 X 9-inch baking dish. They will form a very full single layer. Sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano and bake until the gnocchi puff and are golden brown, 10 minutes. If the gnocchi have not turned golden, run them under the broiler.