This thin chickpea pancake also called farinata is very typical of the Ligurian Sea coast in Italy. The original recipe is just gram flour, water and olive oil so you’re probably thinking “Cool, it’s going to be very easy!”. Well, it’s definitely not complicated but you must remember three important things to obtain the best farinata, creamy inside and crispy outside:
Just so you know, I made about 4 attempts to get this recipe right, though I also did eat the 3 other experiments :)
- thickness: the thinner the better. Imagine two thin crêpes on top of each other. That’s the thickness you want.
- crispiness: 250°C (or the highest your oven can do) immediately under the grill is the main condition to obtain that golden crust you’ll go crazy for.
- time: with factors like thickness and temperature the baking time can change slightly, so you’ll have to watch it at first.
Positive: One of the cheapest recipe ever with a taste of Italy. No gluten involved here.
Negative: You might not get the best result the first time but in the worse case it will taste like a nice frittata.
- 300 g gram flour (chickpea flour)
- 1 small red onion
In your pantry:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil + for baking tray
- 90 cl water
Put flour in a large bowl and add slowly water while stirring constantly with a whisk.That’s it. Leave to rest for at least 3-4 hours (it should make it easier to digest that way).
Preheat oven to highest temperature (10-15 minutes).
Using a spoon, scrape off the foam that is now on the surface of your chickpea mixture and discard it.
Take your baking tray or tins [the first time I would suggest to try with a small baking tin and see how it goes with your oven] and add olive oil to cover the whole surface that you will spread with your hand and along the edges too.
Stir your mixture again as the flour had set up at the bottom of your bowl by now. Add two spoons of olive oil and season with salt. Mix well.
Slice onions as thin as possible, using a mandolin if you have it.
Pour gently the preparation in the baking tray, and remember: just a few millimetres (about 5mm). Sprinkle some oregano, add onions evenly and sprinkle some more salt.
Place in oven, immediately under the grill for about 15 minutes or until the farinata is browned on top.
Best served immediately, while hot and crispy and creamy.
My advice: If you don’t like onions or oregano, you can have it plain or add some fresh rosemary. Usually kids love farinata too!