Grana Padano, bread and spinach Gnocchi
For the Gnocchi:
300 g (10.5 oz) rustic bread, chopped and crust removed
150 g (5.3 oz) Grated Grana Padano Riserva over 20 months
100 ml (3.5 oz) milk
200 g (7.5 oz) cooked spinach
For the Grana Padano béchamel:
500 ml (17.6 oz) milk
40 g (1.4 oz) butter
40 g (1.4 oz) plain flour
100 g (3.5 oz) Grated Grana Padano Riserva over 20 months
Salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste
Layer the cling film on the table and place in the middle 1 quarter of the mixture. Wrap the mixture into the cling film so as to create a long-shaped tube of around 2 cm (1 inch) in diameter. Apply a bit of pressure while rolling the gnocchi on the table and make sure that the gnocchi mixture is well wrapped inside the film. To try and make more sense of this step think of it as if you ever have made maki sushi.
Now repeat the procedure for all of the Grana Padano gnocchi mixture and cook the film wrapped gnocchi in simmering water for about 12 minutes and when ready let them cool down (in iced water if you want to speed up) before unwrapping. The gnocchi should be firm by now.
To prepare the béchamel, melt the butter in a casserole and add the sieved flour to it. Cook for a couple of minutes on medium heat until the roux (mix of butter and flour) is well golden. Now pour in the milk, stirring vigorously with a whisk, and bring to boiling point while continuing to mix. Season with salt and pepper and a touch of nutmeg. The béchamel should be now ready, creamy and with no lumps. Remove from the heat and stir in the grated Grana Padano cheese until it melts. If there are lumps, pass the sauce through a fine sieve.