Saturday, February 2, 2013

Socca "bread"

Socca, if you haven’t yet had one, will definitely become a new obsession after you make your first one. Socca, also known as farinata or cecina, is a sort of thin, unleavened pancake or crêpe of chickpea flour. Served hot and crispy, this chickpea pancake is a quintessential street food found in Nice, France. Many times it is browned or even blackened around the edges, and it has an almost custard like, tender inside. From what I have read, traditionally it is made in a cast iron pan over hot coals or a fire, but it can certainly be made at home in a hot oven, either in a cast iron pan, cake pans or a pizza pan.

I made this for dinner tonight... WOW! It is so yummy. I added 1/2 tsp rosemary. I let the dough sit for 24 hours to help aid in digestion and release any phytates from the beans. Soaking any of your grains, nuts or beans is the best way to eat, but really as Sweet Brown says "Aint nobody got time for dat!" .. I just do it when I can. I also made my kids some soaked Kamut wheat Pumkin muffins.. .they LOVED them. The hardest thing is remembering to soak something every night. I am going to post some Soaked Grain recipes on my blog when I get some time. Here is the recipe for the Socca.. it cooks up like flat bread and I will use it to dip in my Tomato Coconut Soup. People also dip it in tzatziki sauce. I bet that would be super good.

Makes about three seven-inch soccas.
1 cup chickpea flour
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 ¼ cup lukewarm water
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Ghee or coconut oil, for pan

1. In a large bowl, sift chickpea flour, salt, and pepper. Whisk in warm water and olive oil. Let sit, covered, for as many hours as possible (making this before you leave the house in the morning is perfect for making socca for dinner), but at least 30 minutes.

2. Place heavy (preferably cast-iron) skillet in oven and preheat to 450 F.

3. Remove skillet from oven. Add a knob of ghee or coconut oil to the hot pan, and pour batter in a steady stream until it reaches the edges of the pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until the pancake is firm and the edges are set.

4. At this point, you can flip the socca, or set it a few inches below your broiler for a couple minutes, just long enough for it to brown. Cut into wedges and serve hot, with toppings of your choice.

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