Easy Roman Semolina Gnocchi
Mamma Giuliana has a super easy method of shaping Roman semolina gnocchi. Have you ever tasted or prepared this traditional Roman dish? Gnocchi alla Romana, as locals call them, are prepared with semolina flour, sliced into medallions, and layered in a baking dish with butter and parmesan before being baked in the oven.
Roman-style gnocchi are tasty, comforting and very simple to make, but there are varying methods of shaping and cutting the gnocchi. Often the dough is rolled out and left to cool before the shapes (circles, triangles, or squares) are cut out individually. However, Mamma Giuliana has perfected her own technique and found the best way to ensure identical-sized circles with the least effort.
Once you have prepared the dough for the semolina gnocchi (get our recipe here), you should leave it until it has hardened slightly and is hot but cool enough to handle. Lay a sheet of baking paper across your worktop, wet it a little with your hand and then tip the dough on top. Wet your hands to avoid the mixture sticking and then simply shape the dough until you gradually form a compact sausage shape along the center of the paper.
Wrap the paper around the cylinder of dough and trim the ends as necessary. Now take a large piece of plastic wrap and tightly wrap this around the dough, tucking in the ends to ensure that it is well-sealed. Leave at room temperature until it is cool and then place in the fridge for at least 3-4 hours or overnight.
When you are ready to nake your gnocchi, grease a baking dish with butter then take your dough from the fridge, unwrap, and then simply cut into 1cm wide slices. Layer the gnocchi into the dish and cover with butter and grated parmesan before cooking.
This technique is the perfect way to prepare Roman gnocchi ahead of time but could also be used to shape other dishes such as meatloaf or tuna loaf.