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These savory, cheesy, herb-flecked Italian dumplings are a simple and elegant early spring dinner. The fresh ricotta and parmesan gnudi are buried in semolina flour overnight (or up to a few days), which allows a thin skin to form around each dumpling. That skin helps these delicate dumplings hold their shape while they simmer. 

March 2022


Credit: Photo by Christopher Testani / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Kathleen Cook Varner

Recipe Summary

35 mins
50 mins
plus 12 hours refrigeration
6 to 8 servings


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Stir together ricotta cheese, Parmigiano-Reggiano, chopped herbs, eggs, egg yolk, 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, and nutmeg in a large bowl until well combined. Stir in all-purpose flour until just incorporated. Transfer dough to a large ziplock plastic bag with a 1-inch hole cut in one corner.

  • Sprinkle 2 cups semolina on a large rimmed baking sheet. Pipe dough into 8 (12-inch-long, 1-inch-thick) logs onto semolina on baking sheet. Using scissors, cut each log crosswise into 5 (about 2 1/2-inch- long) dumplings; arrange dumplings 1/2 inch apart. Cover dumplings with remaining 2 cups semolina, ensuring each dumpling is completely buried. Chill, uncovered, until dumplings form a thin skin, at least 12 hours or up to 72 hours.

  • Remove dumplings from refrigerator, and let stand at room temperature 15 minutes. Meanwhile, bring 4 quarts water to a boil in a large pot over medium-high. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup kosher salt.

  • Lift half of dumplings from semolina, and dust off excess. Add dumplings to boiling water, and reduce heat to medium-low. Adjust heat as needed to maintain a low simmer. Cook dumplings until set, puffed, and tender, 3 to 4 minutes. (Continue cooking dumplings for 30 to 45 seconds after they float to the surface.)

  • Using a spider or large slotted spoon, transfer dumplings to serving bowls. Drizzle with olive oil; garnish with flaky sea salt and additional chopped fresh herbs. Serve immediately. Repeat steps 4 and 5 with remaining dumplings.

Make Ahead

Shaped dumplings can be refrigerated up to 2 days before cooking.

Suggested Pairing

Crisp, herbal Italian white: La Spinetta Toscana Vermentino