Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese

There’s something deeply comforting about the combination of gnocchi, cream and blue cheese with the lovely freshness of purple sprouting broccoli. Baking the dish intensifies flavours and creates a bubbling brown surface; the result is something rather special yet really simple to make.

Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese

We use ready-made fresh potato gnocchi from the supermarket which makes the recipe pretty quick but of course you can make your own gnocchi if you prefer. Because the dish is pretty rich, we find 125 grams of potato gnocchi to be about right per person but if you have bigger appetites, increase that by 25-50 grams a person, and nudge the amount of cream and broccoli up a little too.

For the cheese, we use Perl Las by Caws Cenarth, which is a soft and creamy organic cow’s milk blue cheese. It has a lovely silky texture and the flavour is a medium-strength but lingering blue. Of course, you can substitute with any other blue cheese of your choice.

Caws Cenarth Perl Las (Blue Cheese)

Don’t use single cream for this dish – the low fat content means it can often curdle when heated. If you can’t find whipping cream, use double (heavy) cream instead.

If you can’t find purple sprouting broccoli, substitute any longstem variety. If none is available, use Calabrese but make sure you cut the florets into thinner pieces so they can be spread nicely between the gnocchi and are not too big to cook through.

Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese

Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese

Combining the textures and flavours of soft and pillowy potato gnocchi, rich and salty blue cheese, cream and purple sprouting broccoli, this beautiful oven-baked dish is comforting and indulgent, yet very easy to make.

Serve with a fresh green salad, or a tomato and onion salad on the side.

Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 500 g ready-made potato gnocchi (uncooked weight)
  • 180-200 g Caws Cenarth Perl Las, or other blue cheese of your choice
  • 200 ml whipping cream
  • 200-250 g purple sprouting broccoli, or any longstem broccoli

Recipe Notes

  • Because the dish is pretty rich, we find 125 grams of potato gnocchi to be plenty per person but if you have bigger appetites, increase that by 25-50 grams a person, and nudge the amount of cream and broccoli up a little too. 
  • For the cheese, we use Perl Las by Caws Cenarth, which is a soft and creamy organic cow’s milk blue cheese. It has a lovely silky texture and the flavour is a medium-strength but lingering blue. Of course, you can substitute with any other blue cheese of your choice.
  • Don't use single cream for this dish – the low fat content means it can often curdle when heated. If you can't find whipping cream, use double (heavy) cream instead. 
  • If you can't find purple sprouting broccoli, substitute any longstem variety. If none is available, use Calabrese but make sure you cut the florets into thinner pieces so they can be spread nicely between the gnocchi and are not too big to cook through. 

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 200 °C.

  • Most ready-made potato gnocchi need only 3-4 minutes boiling to cook. Check the instructions and boil and drain for the recommended time, then drain and set aside.

  • Prep the purple sprouting broccoli (trim the ends, and cut into smaller pieces), then microwave for about a minute on full power, or steam or boil for 2 minutes. It's best if it still has a little bite to it, as it will cook further in the bake.

  • With Perl Las, we don't remove the white bloom rind, but if your cheese has a harder rind, remove it first. Divide the cheese into two halves. Slice half of it into thin slices and set aside. Roughly chop the other half and place into a saucepan with the cream.

    Caws Cenarth Perl Las (Blue Cheese)
  • Heat the cream gently, stirring regularly until the blue cheese is fully melted in.

  • Place the gnocchi and purple sprouting broccoli into an oven-proof baking dish, making sure they broccoli is evenly distributed.

    Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese
  • Pour the blue cheese cream over the top.

    Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese
  • Lay the slices of blue cheese over the top.

    Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese
  • Bake for 20 minutes until the cheese slices on top have become golden brown adn the cream is bubbling. Remove from the oven and serve.

    Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese

 

Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese

Another delicious variation is to use stuffed gnocchi. The last time we made this recipe we used large, pesto-stuffed potato gnocchi and found that the basil and nut flavours work very nicely with the cream, blue cheese and broccoli.

Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese Baked Gnocchi with Purple Sprouting Broccoli and Perl Las Blue Cheese
Made with larger pesto-stuffed gnocchi

I hope you enjoy this recipe – if you make it, please do leave a comment to let me know how you enjoyed it! Would also love to hear about your ideas and variations.

You may also like this Smoked Cheese Gnudi recipe from Giancarlo & Katie Caldesi.

Find more Italian recipes and content on Kavey Eats.

 

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