In Italian, the term gnocco originates from the words lump, knuckle, knot (in wood). Water and flour gnocchi are the ancestors of pasta. By simply mixing flour with water, small balls (or lumps) of dough were created - which are considered to be the first form of homemade pasta - and then boiled in water.
Gnocchetti literally means 'small gnocchi'. These soft-wheat flour and water gnocchi are very easy to make and they are given its traditional shape by using a simple wooden mold called rigagnocchi, gnocchi striper board.
How to Make Gnocchetti
Prepare the Basic Dough Recipe: Soft-wheat Flour and Water and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes in plastic wrap.
Cut a piece of dough and wrap up the rest so that it doesn't dry out. Start rolling the dough into a long rope about the size of your pinky finger.
Using a cutter or a knife, cut the rope into smaller pieces of about 1,5cm / 0.6in.
Flour the ridges of your rigagnocchi. Place a piece of dough on it and with the side of your thumb press the center of the dough and roll it away from you.
Don't be afraid to apply pressure! You want a dimple on one side and stripes on the other.
Press and roll, press and roll, press and roll. It's that simple!
Now speed it up!
If you do not have a gnocchi board you can always use a fork!
Once you are done rolling them out, place your gnocchetti on a stackable pasta dryer or ...
... dust them with semola flour so that they do not stick to the surface or to each other. For this purpose, always remember to use a coarse flour. Fine flour would be absorbed by the dough, making it stick to the surface.
Once you are done, you can either cook the gnocchetti immediately, dry or freeze them.