Gnocchi with Velvety Veal Ragu
SERVES 6 TO 8 AS A STARTER OR 4 AS AN ENTRÉE
This dish is so rich but so worth it. Every calorie.
5 tbsp. butter 12 to 16 leaves (a handful)
fresh sage 2 tbsp. olive oil 1 small onion, finely chopped 1 small stalk celery with leafy top, finely chopped 1 lb. ground veal Salt and finely ground black pepper 4 cloves garlic, finely
chopped 1∕2 tsp. ground white pepper 1∕2 cup white wine
1 cup half- and- half 1∕2 cup chicken stock 4 oz. Gorgonzola dolce
(soft mild blue cheese) 1 package (about 17 oz.) fresh potato gnocchi Grated ParmigianoReggiano About 3∕4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted, for serving
■ Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the gnocchi.
■ In a small skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. When it foams, add the sage leaves. Fry until golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate and let cool. Remove the nutty, brown butter from heat. ■ In a large skillet, heat the oil, two turns of the pan, over medium-high. Add the onion and celery. Cook, stirring often, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the veal. Cook, stirring occasionally and breaking up the meat with a spoon, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Add the garlic and white pepper and stir until aromatic, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the wine. Cook, stirring often, until absorbed, about 2 minutes. Add the half-andhalf and stock. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add the Gorgonzola and stir until melted into the sauce, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Let the sauce simmer while you cook the gnocchi.
■ Reduce the heat of the boiling water to medium so it is gently boiling. Salt the water and add the gnocchi. Cook, stirring often, until the gnocchi float to the surface and are just cooked through, about 3 minutes.
■ Using a spider or strainer, transfer the gnocchi from the water to the sauce. Add the brown butter and a handful of Parm; toss to coat the gnocchi and melt the cheese. Serve in shallow bowls and top with the nuts and crispy sage leaves.