I once wrote on this weblog that gnocchi out of a packet tasted like compacted Deb instant mashed potato: because that's what it essentially is. However, as gnocchi has grown in popularity the manufactured item has improved. It's called market forces. The major supermarkets now carry their own house brands in the refrigerated department. These are not as good as homemade gnocchi but are a satisfactory substitute.
At the supermarket, I picked up a pack of Coles pumpkin gnocchi, a pack of Brussels sprouts, and some walnuts. As I was passing the fresh cheese section one of those mark-down stickers jumped out at me. They always do: I do like a bargain. It was a wedge of Roquefort cheese marked down from $12 to $3 due to an arbitrary use-by date nearing - I thought cheese improved with age. Roquefort at the price of cheddar. Gold.
Later, I cooked the halved sprouts until they were just tender and bright green, then browned them slightly in a pan with flecks of prosciutto. I threw the walnuts in as well just to warm them through. Meanwhile, I cooked the gnocchi - no real effort required there - and drained it.
Then I assembled the dish: gnocchi in shallow bowls with Brussels sprouts and walnut mixture; crumbled Roquefort over the top; then plates under the grill to melt the cheese, and a sprinkling of parsley and grated lemon rind to finish.
The soft pillows of slightly sweet pumpkin combined with the blue cheese's bite and the textural dimension of earthy walnuts and Brussels sprouts turned this dish into something out of this world. Or is that over-analysing it: I hate people gushing about food.