Gnocchi are a sort of dumplings, usually made from boiled potatoes knead with flour, or sometimes from different ingredients, or even just with flour and water. They are usually shaped like a sort of big beans, need cooking in boiling water, like pasta, and can be seasoned in any possible way you like to have a great first course.
Gnocchi have ancient origin, probably dating back to Roma times. Back then, they were probably more similar to today’s semolina Gnocchi, a dish typical of Lazio made with semolina flour, milk, butter, eggs and parmesan.
You can basically make Gnocchi with any type of flour and ingredients and spices. So you can have Gnocchi of different colors: green with spinach, yellow with saffron, orange with carrots…
In cooking, there are countless recipes with gnocchi. Amongst the best-known, there are Sorrentina-style Gnocchi, a typical dish of Neapolitan tradition.
Fun fact: because of the high degree of satisfaction derived from eating gnocchi, here in Italy we have the saying “ridi che mamma ha fatto gli gnocchi” (literally: laugh, that mum’s made gnocchi), used sarcasticly to say that you have no reason to laugh.