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Gnocchi (potato dumplings)

Updated: Nov 27, 2023

Fantastic first course and briliant when you have nothing else in the house but potatoes, rest assured it will be loved by everybody.

Ingredients for the gnocchi (3 people):

  • 500gr red potatoes, such as roosters

  • 175gr plain flour

  • Fine salt

  • Semolina

Ingredients for the sauce:

  • 30gr butter or vegetable spread (not oil!)

  • 2 tbsp dried sage

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • Grated parmisan

  • Parmisan flakes


  • Peel and boil the potatoes cut in chunks in salted water, then drain well and mash them as well as possible (if you have a potatoe ricer it's even better)

  • Once mashed wait until they become just cool enough to handle with bare hands. This recipe works well only if you are working with very warm potatoes

  • Put the mashed potatoes on your table, add the salt and the flour and start mixing the dough.

  • TIP: depending on the age of the potatoes, they may not absorb all of the flour, and that's fine. Do not overmix, otherwise your gnocchi will be hard once cooked

  • Wrap tightly the dough in tinfoil to keep it warm and wet

  • Spread some semolina on the table

  • Cut out a thick slice of dough and start working it onto the table giving it the shape of a narrow (1cm) cilinder

  • Make sure to roll the cilinder well into the semolina

  • Cut the cilinder in 1cm pieces, then shape them to obtain the classic oblong shape, lightly mixing them with semolina (shake off the excess)

  • Now you have the choice to leave the gnocchi as they are, per the main picture above, or to make the classic ridges and shape by using a "rigagnocchi" (a ridged board used for gnocchi)

  • If you use that, just take a shaped piece, run it lightly over the board from the top down with your finger making an imprint on the side were no ridges will be created.

  • Keep making the gnocchi, one little cilinder at a time, and always keep the rest of the dough wrapped in tinfoil

  • TIP: now it's not the time to take a break, the dough must be quite warm when you work it, so don't leave it time to cool down

  • TIP: gnocchi cannot wait, you either cook them straight away, or you freeze them and then cook them from frozen. If you are freezing them, put them on a chopping board in the freezer until hardened, then bag them

  • Melt the butter with the sage over medium heat

  • Let it cook 2-3 mins but don't let it brown

  • Cook the gnocchi in batches in salty boiling water

  • TIP: they're ready as soon as they come to the surface (1-2 mins), so drain them using a perforated ladle and set aside with some sauce while you cook the next batch

  • Mix delicately with grated parmisan and a little black pepper

  • Serve scattering the bowls with parmisan flakes


There are a lot of sauces you can use with gnocchi, but absolutely do not use the bolognese sauce. Here are some ideas:

  • Cream of asparagus

  • Cream of artichokes

  • Mixed nuts pesto

  • Walnut and cheese cream

  • Courgette pesto

  • Simple tomato sauce

  • Pesto alla genovese (the tipical green one)

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