#WorldOnAPlate: Roman Dumplings

Today I am proposing the recipe for Roman Dumplings AKA gnocchi alla romana. Gnocchi alla romana are a rather unknown version of gnocchi that is very popular in Italy, especially among kids. I remember loving them and looking forward to having some. I suspect that for my mom they were one of those pre-pakaged frozen dishes she did not want to give us too often because they were bad for us. But that only made them more tasty to me because they had that sort of bad for you aura that makes everything better.

Roman Dumplings

These gnocchi are with semolino, which is a polenta made of semolina (durum flour). The semolino is enriched with cheese and eggs, spread in a 1 inch layer and then cut into gnocchi, which are then baked in the oven until browned. You can only imagine how delicious they are!

So  when it was time to settle on an Italian recipe for dumplings for World on a Plate, I decided to forgo the more well known dumpling recipes like gnocchi and ravioli and go for Roman Dumplings. Hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

#WorldOnAPlate: Roman Dumplings

Yield: 3-4 Servings


  • 7 oz. durum flour
  • 3 and 1/4 cups milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 2-3 tbsp butter
  • salt
  • nutmeg


  1. Bring the milk to a simmer. Add 1 table spoon of the butter, a pinch of salt and a pinch of nutmeg.
  2. Stir the flour into the simmering milk using a whisk. Keep beating until the mixture thickens up and there are no lumps.
  3. Add half the cheese and stir it in.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time and mix until they are well incorporated.
  5. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and pour the semolino on top of it.
  6. Flatten the semolino into a 1/3 inch thick layer (you can use your hands for that) and let it cool down.
  7. Once the semolino has solidified, cut discs from the semolino.
  8. Butter up an oven dish and place the leftover semolino (what you could not cut into rounds) on the bottom. Sprinkle with grated parmesan and butter flakes.
  9. Arrange the gnocchi (the discs) in the oven dish into partially overlapping rows. Sprinkle with parmesan and butter flakes.
  10. At this point you can either place the oven dish into a 400F oven and cook it until the gnocchi are golden brown (abut 20 minutes) or place in the fridge (for up to 2 days) or the freezer (up to a month - maybe longer). When you are ready to eat the gnocchi, just cook them in the oven until they are warm throughout and golden brown.

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13 Responses to #WorldOnAPlate: Roman Dumplings

  1. I was just wondering how exactly to make gnocchi alla romana, which my mom used to buy at a fresh pasta little shop in Rome… no way to get them here, so I will have to make them. thank you for this lovely recipe!

  2. oh nice! I always wanted to make these but you know time made me forget them, or lets say they were out of my sight in asia. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Daniela says:

    Che delizia i tuoi gnocchi, favolosi! Un abbraccio, buona giornata Daniela.

  4. This is not the gnocchi or dumpling I know, but it does look very delicious and comforting.

  5. Oooh I love this variation on the gnocchi I am familiar with. Sounds amazing.

  6. Michela says:

    Ciao! Ho appena scoperto per caso il tuo blog e mi sono persa via a leggerlo… davvero interessante! Mi ritrovo molto in ciò che scrivi, anch’io ho fatto il senior year negli USA (farci il master sarebbe fantastico!) e capisco tutte le voglie di cibo italiano… anche se ora che sono tornata in Italia I’m craving American food eheh
    Complimenti, mi aggiungo ai lettori fissi!
    A presto,

    • PolaM says:

      Grazie per i complimenti! Sono andata a sbirciare il tuo sito e mi piace molto il focus in un certo senso opposto al mio! Adesso comincero’ a seguirti! Ma l’Alaska com’e’?

      • Michela says:

        Beh, ovviamente freddissima ahah
        Ma a parte quello lo stile di vita è simile a quello degli altri stati degli USA, è solo un po’ più in armonia con la natura. Per la strada si incontrano molte alci, ogni tanto si vede l’aurora e tutti i girni si deve spalare la neve sul vialetto!

  7. These look like the perfect cold weather dinner! How could anyone resist? 😀

  8. Lovely dumplings. 🙂 Happy Dumpling day. 🙂

  9. Ooooh these look absolutely delicious!!! Now I want to make these asap!

  10. Yum! I love these. But you remind me I haven’t made them in a very long time… and I haven’t decided what to make for dinner yet!

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