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Roman Semolina Gnocchi Recipe - Gnocchi alla Romana

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Making Gnocchi alla Romana: Serve!

Making Gnocchi alla Romana: Serve!

Kyle Phillips
Livio Jannattoni, one of the great Roman gastronomes, says he grew up eating potato gnocchi, and first encountered Gnocchi alla Romana made with semolina in a dining car on a train far from the city.
"Where were the potatoes I knew so well? Horrors! These gnocchi were made just with semolina..." He does give a recipe for them, however, because some (not all) other Roman authors do.

Prep Time: 2 hours, 25 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours, 10 minutes


  • 1 1/2 cups (250 g) semolina
  • 1 quart (1 liter) milk
  • 2 brimming cups (100 g) grated Parmigiano
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2-3 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • Salt


Bring the milk to a boil, and gradually stir in the semolina, stirring constantly to prevent lumps and keep the mixture from sticking to the pot. The mixture will become quite thick; continue cooking and stirring for about 20 minutes, and remove the pot from the fire. Beat the yolks with a little more milk, and add them to the semolina, together with the cheese, solid butter, and a pinch of salt. Mix well and spread the mixture a little less than a half an inch thick (1 cm) on your work surface.

Let the semolina cool for 2 hours, and cut it into squares or diamonds. Butter a pan and layer the squares in it, spreading a little more grated cheese between the layers (there should be 3-4). When all is used up, sprinkle the melted butter over the gnocchi, slowly, to allow it to penetrate.

Bake the gnocchi 15 minutes in a hot (400 F or 200 C) oven, until golden, and serve at once. A wine? White, for example Orvieto Bianco, or Est! Est! Est!

Yield: 4-6 servings Gnocchi alla Romana

User Reviews

 4 out of 5
Gnocchi alla Romana, Member DonMulholland

I tried to follow this recipe carefully but I must be doing something wrong. No way could I find 1 1/2 cups of semolina equal to 250 g, and 2 brimming cups of grated Parmigiano was a lot more than 100 grams. I did follow the metric amounts but found the milk impossible to stir for twenty minutes after I added the semolina. I was unable to continue cooking for twenty minutes and had to stop after three minutes. I haven't finished yet and am presently waiting for the 2 hour cooling-off period. I do love all of your recipes and none of them have failed me, even though I am often tempted to substitute or add more than the specified amounts. Molte grazie. Mi piace molto cucinare.

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