I have been back at an office 9-5 for four weeks and have, of course, been remembering how very few things are really WTF material. When you’re out all day, commuting for almost two hours, and trying to get life admin (tax return anyone?) done in the evenings, cooking suddenly becomes a luxury.
And, yet, so far, in the last month, time constraints have helped me discover some real gems. In these circumstances, I am driven by two things: the need to use up whatever is in the fridge and, when I can, the desire to make something that will bear a repeat for lunch the next day. This falls into the first category; I always have loads of leftover cheese and cream, and though I can usually find a use for them, I recently came across three recipes on The Wine Society’s website which made me glad I had a fridge-full. The first, a cheese sauce for pasta or gnocchi, made me cheer with delight at its simple, thrifty usefulness. One for the dark nights, when fast, warming food is all you need. Served with gnocchi, this takes seven minutes, including the chopping…
Cheese sauce (for 2, depending on how greedy you are)
NB Once made, this will keep very well in the fridge for a day or two.
Cupboard (or things you may already have)
a pinch of Cayenne pepper
a pinch of salt (optional, to taste; you may not need it depending on how salty the cheese is)
Shopping list (though, in my case, these were all in the fridge/flat)
150g blue cheese (I used Shropshire Blue)
a tablespoon of grated Parmesan or Pecorino
100g crème fraîche, sour cream or mascarpone
a generous handful of fresh thyme or sage leaves, finely chopped
pasta or gnocchi
1. Cook the gnocchi or pasta according to the packet instructions, and drain.
2. Just before the gnocchi or pasta is ready, put all the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan and heat very gently until the cheese has melted and the sauce is starting to bubble very gently. Toss with the gnocchi/pasta and serve immediately.