Saturday, July 21, 2012

Gnocci in Gorgonzola Sauce

I tasted these at a press event in March. We were at Food4Media's MediaPlace: All About Italy and Olive Magazine's 100th issue party, at Assaggetti in London. Lots of standard nibbles had gone around already but towards the end of the event all sorts of freshly cooked hot nibbles started coming thick and fast out of the kitchen. They were all delicious, but these little beauties blew me away. The gnocci were quite big and square but were not stodgy or heavy. These soft, neutral pillows of comfort were coated in a tasty blue cheese sauce. They were just stunning. 

Assaggetti's PR people kindly got hold of the recipe for me. I made the gnocci in the traditional shape in these photos, just because I like making them, but the recipe's easier cube option actually worked better.

It was only when making this dish that I realised quite how calorific and fat-filled the sauce is. Red wine (I had a nice chianti) is definitely required to dissolve some of the cholesterol. I am no calorie counter or one to choose 'healthy' options, but this is hardcore!

Ingredients to serve four


1kg of Potatoes
1 egg
300g plain flour
A pinch of salt to taste


300g Gorgonzola cheese
50g butter
100cl of whipping cream

What to do

  • Wash potatoes and boil whole for 50 minutes, then peel and mash. Allow to cool. 
  • Add the flour, egg and a pinch of salt to the mash working the mixture with your hands until it is a firm dough. 
  • Cut the dough into long 2-3cm strips, then roll and cut into cubes 
  • Cook the gnocchi in boiling salted water for two minutes; They will rise to the surface when cooked. 
  • Scoop out and then place in the pan with the cheese sauce and cook for a minute longer.

Put the butter, gorgonzola and cream into a pan and melt over a low heat for two to three minutes.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Pure Strawberry Juice - A Taste Sensation

This is strawberry juice. Not liquidised strawberries, but the pure juice of strawberries and it is a quite awesome elixir.

I had some strawbs in the fridge and kept forgetting to take them out to get to room temperature for eating so they risked going off. My housemate recently invested in a top-of-the-range juicer, and we’ve had lots of fun concocting potions with fruit, vegetables, herbs and spices. Pineapple, cucumber, pear, ginger, mint and beetroot have become favourite ingredients, but the fun thing about this adventure has been that the flavours of pure juices are often quite different from the un-juiced item. It seems that secret magical flavours are locked away in the structure of all fruit and vegetables, and releasing them adds a whole new dimension to food preparation and cooking.

Strawberry juice, still a little frothy on top

So, I juiced my chilled strawberries. I didn’t add anything else, because I wanted to experience the flavour on its own first. Unlike liquidised whole strawberries, it didn’t need lemon juice or sugar to enhance the flavour. It was pretty special; smelt mainly just like strawberry but was intensely clean-tasting. Essence of strawberry but also somehow the taste of fresh verdant countryside air, slightly floral, and if the juice hadn’t been dark red I would have immediately thought it tasted ‘green’ – I realised that later. As I carried on sipping and savouring I could also taste cucumber, and every mouthful brought new flavours and scents.