Gnocchi alla Romana

I adore gnocchi. Have had ’em made with potato and with ricotta, and they are delicious no matter what sauce adorns them. But I ran across Gnocchi alla Romana in the Williams-Sonoma catalog this weekend, and I have to try this polenta-like version — it looks amazing!

If you want something a little more substantial and less fussy than the usual gnocchi, this will stick to the ribs and also be a great foil for meatballs with sauce. Thanks to Saveur magazine for the recipe and photo!

Gnocchi alla Romana
Photo: André Baranowski

4 cups milk
1 1⁄2 cups semolina (about 8 oz.)
1 1⁄2 cups finely grated Parmesan or grated hard goat cheese
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
2 egg yolks, beaten
Kosher salt, to taste

1. In a 5-qt. pot over medium-high heat, bring milk to a simmer while stirring. Reduce heat to low; slowly whisk in semolina. Cook, whisking, until tender, 8–10 minutes. Whisk in 1⁄2 cup Parmesan, 4 tbsp. butter, and yolks; season with salt. Remove from heat.

2. Wet a 15″ x 10″ rimmed baking sheet with a soaked paper towel. Pour semolina mixture onto baking sheet; smooth surface with spatula to 1⁄2″ thickness. Let cool until firm, about 40 minutes.

3. Heat oven to 450˚. Using a knife, cut gnocchi dough in 2″ squares; transfer half of the squares to a buttered 9″ x 13″ baking pan. Sprinkle gnocchi with 1⁄4 cup Parmesan and dot with 2 tbsp. butter. Layer remaining gnocchi on top and sprinkle with 1⁄4 cup cheese and remaining butter. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes. Serve with remaining cheese.



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