Farinata

di ceci

Originating from Genoa, this chickpea pancake is delicious served fresh and warm, with a crispy top and warm and golden in the middle. Fresh rosemary or other herbs lift it, and it makes a delicious snack – it is also naturally gluten-free due to the chickpea flour. I love a slice of farinata alongside oven baked mozzarella and artichokes or other roasted vegetables for a more hearty main course. Make sure you factor in enough time for the flour to absorb the liquid and soften up before you plan on baking it.

Pictured here, a version I made with the additions of a few baby artichokes in oil, half an onion (thinly sliced), and a grating of Parmesan and Pecorino in addition to the rosemary. The recipe below is for a simple rosemary and rocksalt version, adapt it as you please.

Makes 1 large or 2 medium pancakes

INGREDIENTS

  • 170g chickpea flour
  • 500g water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • grating of black pepper
  • olive oil, for cooking
  • 3 sprigs of rosemary, finely chopped (or herbs of choice)

METHOD

Weigh your flour and water into a large bowl and whisk thoroughly until there are no lumps. Leave it to rest in a warm place for 4-6 hours and give it a whisk every couple of hours (or you can leave it to rest overnight).

Preheat your oven to 280°C.

Just before you are ready to cook the farinata, whisk in the salt.

Heat 1.5 tablespoons (a generous covering) of olive oil in an an oven proof frying pan over a medium heat. Slowly and carefully ladle in some of the batter, so that it floats on top of the oil rather than mixing in, until the batter is around / just under 1cm thick.

Add your rosemary and any other herbs you want to use, and bake in the oven until the top is a golden yellowish-brown in colour and has crisped up. If you struggle to get this finish in your oven, you can finish it off under the grill. Depending on the size of the frying pan you are using, repeat this if necessary until you’ve used up your batter.

Serve immediately, sliced into wedges. Season with salt and pepper if it needs it.

You can add other fillings to your farinata if you like, such as cheese (blue cheese or grated Parmesan is lovely), red onion, roasted garlic, or cooked vegetables such as thinly sliced baby artichokes or mushrooms and truffle oil.