Flavours of WUR: Gnocchi della Val Varaita

Marta Nidola, a Master's student of Geo-Information Science, takes us to Italy
Marta Nidola, a Master’s student of Geo-Information Science, from Italy

All the flavours of the world can be found in the WUR community. Marta Nidola, a Master’s student of Geo-Information Science, takes us to Italy.

Ingredients (4 servings)

With this recipe, I honour my grandma, who passed away some weeks ago while I was in Wageningen. For me, gnocchi della Val Varaita brings back memories of carefree summer vacations spent in Melle (population around 300) with my cousins, enjoying simple things.

  • 1kg potatoes
  • 350g plain flour
  • 400g ‘tumin del mel’, a fresh cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • Salt


  1. Boil the potatoes in their skins
  2. As soon as they are cooked through, peel and mash them. It is important to do this while they are still hot! You could peel them first, so as not to burn your fingers, but that is not advisable since it will make the potatoes absorb more water.
  3. Put the grated cheese in a bowl and tip the mashed potato into it. Mix as necessary to make sure the cheese melts completely.
  4. Add the eggs, flour and a pinch of salt, and stir well. Then knead the dough until it forms a firm, compact ball.
  5. Take some of the dough and roll it between your hands. Then cut it into smaller or larger pieces, depending whether you like the long ‘ravioli’ or the smaller ‘gnocco’ shape. Form the dough into the shape you want by rolling it between your hands.
  6. Place the gnocchi in boiling salt water and scoop them out with a slotted spoon as soon as they float.
  7. Serve the gnocchi straightaway, covered in tomato sauce and sprinkled with grated Parmesan, or ‘in bianco’ (a fondue made with cream and cheese).

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