Sunday, December 22, 2013

Gorgonzola Gnocchi with Walnut Cream Sauce




      UPDATE: I learned this year, that sadly, Rose Angelis closed, on October 1, 2016, after 25 years of business.  Miss it more than I can say. 

Happy Holidays to all!

As I figure with most of you, coming down to the wire of the big holiday, not enough hours a day and I have not posted as much as I want, but this dish is too good not to share, so here we go.

This dish was inspired by a dish from one of my all time favorite restaurants, Rose Angelis*, in Chicago.  Their dish, Totellone Con Salsa di Noce, as the name implies is made with Gorgonzola filled tortelloni, with grapes in a walnut pesto cream sauce.  The first time I had it was in '96, and the dish is still on the menu.  It's that good.  Not surprising, the recipe is a well guarded secret.  As is should be.  The next time you are in Chicago, I cannot recommend this place enough.  It's an independent, one of a kind gem.  I have been there more than 2 dozen times over the years, and I can't recall one time when I left and my dining companion(s) and I were not over the moon.  Great food, cozy ambience, great service, (friendly, attentive, but non intrusive), and every employee seems to be pleased as punch to be working there.  Being in restaurants for close to 20 years, that's the highest praise I give.

Now onto the dish, I want to commend another place, Frankie's Deli in Lombard, IL.  I wrote about Frankie's back in February, so if you'd like to read that, just click on February.  On a recent visit to Frankie's I bought Gorgonzola Gnocchi, and decided to try to come up with a dish to appease my taste buds till I get to Rose Angelis again.

 This is an incredibly rich dish, perfect for a winter's night.  Also, provided that you have all the ingredients, comes together in less than 15 minutes.  I paired it with a Sauvignon Blanc, which helped cut the richness and complemented the dish nicely.  On the other hand, a nice Cabernet would be good as well.  So, whatever you fancy.


Gorgonzola Gnocchi with Walnut Cream Sauce             2-4 servings


16 oz. of Gorgonzola Gnocchi (Gorgonzola filled pasta will also work, of course.  Some day I hope to make my own, till then...) Cook as instructed.

For the sauce- in a small heavy sauce pan
melt, 3 TBLSP of butter
cooked 1 minced clove of garlic, till soft
add 3TBLSP of crushed walnuts and cook until soft
add 4tsp of dried sweet basil
add 1 cup of Heavy Whipping Cream- raise heat and cook on high to just ready to boil; constantly stirring to avoid burning.  Keep at med-high heat, but not boiling, and add 1 cup (or more) of shredded parmesan and shredded asiago cheese.  Stir till blended and slightly thickened; (this is not as thick as an alfredo) .

For plating
Slice a half a dozen or so red grapes for each plate, spoon out 10 gnocchi, and top with about 3 TBLSP of sauce.

Enjoy!