Alessandra’s Potato Gnocchi

Gnocchi di Patate di Alessandra

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves



Appears in

Alessandra Delle Fratte and her mother made this very traditional Lazio speciality for us all when we visited them. The only ‘trick’ is learning how to make the gnocchi concave on one side and with grooves on the other. You can serve them with any basic sauce - for example, the one used for the lasagne filling - and grated Parmesan.


  • 2 lb (1 kg) potatoes, well scrubbed
  • up to lb (500 g) plain white flour
  • salt
  • meat or tomato sauce of your choice and grated Parmesan cheese to serve


Boil the potatoes, unpeeled, until just soft but not coming apart. Peel and mash them quickly before they cool down. (And before you scald yourself!) Blend the flour and potatoes together until you have a smooth and elastic mixture. (Don’t over-knead or the result will be very heavy.)

Roll the mixture out into ‘snake’ shapes about the width of your thumb, then cut it into dice-sized cubes. Press each cube against the prongs of a fork with your index finger to make a deep dent in one side and grooves on the other. Lay them out on a floured surface as you prepare them.

Bring a large pan of salted water to a rolling boil. Toss in the gnocchi and cook them for about 3–4 minutes or until they rise to the surface. Scoop them out with a slotted spoon and place them in a warm bowl. Dress with hot meat or tomato sauce of your choice and toss together thoroughly. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan and serve.