Balsamic Grilled Tomatoes
4 Roma (or locally grown) Tomatoes
1 cup aged Balsamic Vinegar
2 tbsp chopped Garlic
2 tbsp Sugar
1 tsp Salt
475 g or 1 tub Extra Smooth Ricotta
¾ cup + ¾ cup unbleached
1 cup grated Sylvan Star Old Grizzly
4 Egg Yolks
1 tbsp Salt
3 tsp ground Black Pepper
½ tsp ground Nutmeg
Zest of half a Lemon
Reduced Cream Sauce
1 tbsp Canola Oil or Olive Oil
1 tsp crushed Chili Flakes
1 tbsp chopped Garlic
2 cups White Wine
1 litre Whipping Cream
2 cups grated Sylvan Star Old
Salt to taste
- First thing we need to do is to get the Tomatoes into the Balsamic Marinade. Cut them into quarters or random, medium-large shapes — just not too small because they will be getting charred over a hot flame. Combine the Balsamic Vinegar, chopped Garlic, Sugar and Salt in a medium bowl, giving it a good stir to dissolve the sugar and salt. Submerge your cut tomatoes into the balsamic marinade and let that sit at room temperature while you make the rest of the recipe (about an hour).
- In a medium bowl, combine your Extra Smooth Ricotta with ¾ cup Flour, grated Old Grizzly Gouda, Egg Yolks, Salt, Pepper, Nutmeg and Lemon Zest. You can use a dinner fork to mix everything together in the bowl but be careful not to over mix. Making sure everything is well combined, the mixture should be wet and tacky, closely resembling a good biscuit dough.
- Lightly dust a baking tray with about ½ cup of Flour. The best way to portion the Gnudi is by using a floured soup spoon or tablespoon, scoop enough batter to cover half of the spoon. Then, using your index finger, slide the Gnudi mixture from the spoon onto your floured baking tray. You will get roughly 32 individual Gnudi, depending on how big or small you make them. It’s a rustic dish so no need to be fussy. Dust the top of the scooped mixture with the remaining flour and start forming them. Pick one up and place it between your palms, gently rolling it into a short, stubby cylinder. Pat each end to make it flat and place them back onto the floured baking sheet. When done rolling, put the entire tray into the fridge to rest for 10 minutes.
- While your Gnudi are resting, fire up that BBQ or Grill Pan to high for your Tomatoes and put on a large pot of salted water to boil. Once you have that done, we can start preparing the Cream Reduction Sauce for the Gnudi. In a medium to large saucepan on medium-high heat, put in a tablespoon of oil and let that heat up for about a minute. Add in your Chili Flakes first, letting them get all jumpy in the oil to let those essential oils out. Then add the Garlic, turning the heat down to medium so it does not burn. Once the garlic is golden brown, deglaze with two cups of Wine. Let the wine bubble away and reduce by just over half. When the wine has finished reducing, you can add in the Whipping Cream. Whipping cream tends to boil up and over when reducing so stir often with a spatula on medium-low heat. Slowly reduce your cream sauce until you have a shiny-thick sauce, resembling Alfredo.
- While the sauce is reducing, drop your rested Gnudi in two batches (half at a time) into the boiling, salted water. The Gnudi will take three to five minutes to cook and will float when finished. Give them a little stir just after dropping them in to make sure they do not stick to one another. Pull them out of the boiling water with a mesh strainer and place into your simmering sauce. Repeat that process until all your Gnudi are cooked and fluffy. After all your little pillows have hit the simmering sauce, you can go ahead and add in the remaining shredded Old Grizzly Gouda to help tighten and thicken it up. Stir gently, using a silicone spatula, making sure everything is well coated. Take off from the heat and season to your taste with salt. This part is done!
- Now that your Gnudi are getting married with the creamy sauce, we can char the Tomatoes. Scrape down your hot BBQ or Grill so there is a nice, clean area for the tomatoes to sit. Using tongs, place your marinated tomato skin down on the grill grates. You will get some flame lapping from the oil in the marinade so watch out for your knuckles! Let the tomatoes sit on the grill for about a minute and a half so the skin gets nice and blistered for a charred flavour. Flip the tomatoes onto the other side and grill for another minute. Then place them back into the balsamic marinade after grilling.
- Plating is the fun part, so arrange the creamy Gnudi to your heart’s desire. They can be plated individually or family style in a rustic looking vessel. Saucy Gnudi down first, then arrange your charred tomatoes on top. Garnish with farm fresh herbs and herb garlic flavored oil.