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Chickpea Farinata is a recipe from Cranks’ Bible that has become a standby in my kitchen. It is super easy to make and makes a nice change from bread. It’s all chickpea flour and water, but it turns out sort of like a frittata or a thick pancake. I like to eat it fresh or heated for breakfast.

I believe it is Southern Italian or Sicilian in origin. Nadine Abensur gives a few suggestions for toppings, tomatoes, olives and eggplants among them. I’ve tried all of the above and they are very tasty. The version pictured is my own though, and grew out of the fact that I have a huge amount of za’atar at home and want to use some of it up. Even though it’s an Italian recipe I think it works nicely with more Levantine spices and accessories.

250 g chickpea flour

750 ml warm water

1 tbsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup za’atar

olives

3 tbsp olive oil plus extra for the za’atar and for the dish

Whisk the water into the chickpea flour a little at a time so as to avoid lumps. Add the salt and the cumin. Nadine Abensur’s recipe says to let stand for at least 2 hours. This time I let it stand over night, but I’ve made it without letting it rest and to be honest I couldn’t really tell the difference.

Set the oven to 450 farenheit.

Mix the za’atar with some water and olive oil.

Add the olive oil, red pepper flakes and the black pepper to the chickpea batter.

Stick a casserole dish or oven-proof skillet in the oven with a little olive oil in it to coat. When the oil is hot and sizzling pour the batter in. Sprinkle with the za’atar and olives, or whatever toppings you want to use.

Let bake for about 15 minutes or until the batter has set and the top is golden brown.

Let rest for a while and then eat.

I like it about 1 inch thick. I have no idea if that’s authentic or not, but it’s damn tasty.

Chickpea Farinata

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