Friday, January 14, 2011

Gnocchi A La Parisienne

     This was a busy week and a snowy week - the combination of which meant that Nana and I each made it through our recipes but did not manage to "taste test" each others efforts. 

      Luckily we each have built-in recipe testers at each house, but we look forward to the "compare and contrast" that was easier to do when there was not so much snow on the ground ! 

Nana's Gnocchi ~
Per Nana:

For such a simple recipe, I never used so many dishes in my life. 

This is my first try at making a "pate a choux" type of dough, 
 but I have to admit it was very easy.  

 I did use the four large eggs as the recipe called for, but next time
I will attempt to do it with the separate egg white beaten
into peaks and folded into themixture to make it lighter.

I let it sit for about two hours hoping it would
dry out little, but it was still sticky.

I tried to form the gnocchi first and then cook them,
 but they were difficult to handle. 
 I eventually just dropped them into the water using a teaspoon.

Unfortunately, I read the Q & A page too late.  I thought the pastry bag described on the Q&A was an excellent idea.

They did cook up well enough, but the size was not
consistent even though it really doesn't matter when it is
 covered with Bechamel and cheese.

Now to the Bechamel.......

I just read Cher's post, and we both had the same problem.  
This was my first try at Bechamel since I took cooking
in grade school, and you know how long ago that was. 

After trying to strain lumps out
(and losing much of it to the strainer)....
 I came across one of my flat wisks which worked wonders.

I used Emmenthal cheese for the topping and
 the aroma was terrific.
Dad and I both enjoyed the dish, and I
 hope yours turns out well too.


Tricia's Gnocchi ~
Per Tricia:

I was pleasantly surprised by how easy this dish turned out and amazed that something so wonderful could be made out of "so little".  

As usual lately, I ended up making this Friday night (I honestly hope to get out of this schedule in the near future :) and was expecting the worst. 

 I had already gotten feedback from Nana about checking out the Q&A ahead of time...which is the whole purpose....but I even ran out of time for that and plowed right into the recipe. 

 In all fairness, I would have deserved a disaster.  Needless to say I was delighted by how interesting it all was and how well it turned out.  I had not made pasta or gnocchi before and it was very forgiving.

 I even lucked out with the sauce.  I managed to switch right over from the wooden spoon to a whisk when I hit the Bechamel sauce...but had done so because my arm (and the rest of me) was tired and I thought it sounded easier.  And easier it was - the sauce turned out lovely and thick. 

I found Dorie's recipe and instructions to be "spot on"...and even when I wasn't sure what she meant (cook until it forms a light film on the bottom of the pan.....) but everything she described came true to life.

I used Parmesan on the top and for the first few minutes had forgotten to add the butter on top.  I popped it out and added the butter and some Gruyere. 
 I also took her advice about throwing the broiler on...which can be dangerous when you are tired :) 

The dish turned out well browned and my kitchen smelled divine. 
The aroma summoned the taste testers and all loved it...agreeing it would be a perfect dish for when they come home from a day of skiing.

I honestly came into this recipe thinking I would do it for the fun of the blog but had no intention of making it again, but I am happy to say that I would try this again in heartbeat.  So long as my husband agrees to help clean all the pots and dishes I used !


  1. Lovely, lovely, lovely! Both of your dishes came out so great. Glad you liked them...they were a hit at our house too, but a lot more work than I expected!

  2. Glad it worked out well for the both of you. I know everyone in my house liked them; but I think I need to recoup a bit before I will try it again - although I am still pretty jazzed about trying the spinach & mint gnocchi from the book. (Definitely would pipe them out)