Making Ricotta Gnocchi at home couldn't be easier. The addition of bleu cheese and walnuts makes for a gourmet dinner.
I count ricotta gnocchi among one of my favorite meals. I make these little tender pillows when I want soft, creamy comfort food. When I crave something heavier, I pan-fry them in a mixture of butter and olive oil and top with a spicy tomato sauce.
Here, I give you my favorite variation: crumbled bleu cheese and toasted walnuts. The key to this dish is toasting the walnuts past the point of being fragrant and light brown—almost burnt, almost. Crunchy walnuts are necessary to balance the creaminess of the gnocchi and melted cheese.
The other key to this dish is a gentle touch. I admit that I make ricotta gnocchi instead of regular potato gnocchi because it’s more forgiving. But, a seriously well-floured counter is your best friend in this dish. Also, work in small batches when you’re rolling out the dough.
Divide the dough into 4 chunks, and flour the board and the top of the dough. Dust your hands lightly in flour and gently roll the dough into a log about 1” thick. Then, chop the gnocchi into any size you like. Repeat with the remaining dough.
I hope these ricotta gnocchi become your new favorite comfort food
- 4 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 egg, large
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 clove garlic, grated on a microplane
- 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting and rolling
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 4 ounces bleu cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup walnuts
In a medium bowl, stir together the ricotta, egg, Parmesan cheese, salt and garlic. Mix very well. Next, gently stir in the flour. Stir until just combined, don’t over-mix.
Flour the counter, and scoop out one-quarter of the dough. Dust flour on top, and with flour-dusted hands, gently roll the dough into a 1” log. Cut the dough into gnocchi pieces and place on a floured plate. Repeat the process for the remaining dough. Always be gentle with the dough and use a light touch.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, toast the walnuts in a large skillet over high heat. Stir constantly, and look for a deep brown color. Don’t be afraid to get them too dark. Remove the walnuts from the pan and wipe clean.
When the water is rapidly boiling, lower half of the gnocchi into the water gently with a strainer or wire spider. Meanwhile, melt the butter on very low heat in the same large skillet the walnuts were in. When the gnocchi float to the surface, remove them from the water and place them in the skillet with the butter.
Boil the remaining gnocchi and add them to the pan with the butter when they are done.
Cook the gnocchi in the butter on low heat and stir them gently.
When the butter begins to brown, turn the heat off and add the bleu cheese and toasted walnuts. Serve immediately.