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And Today's Word of the Day: Farinata [fariˈnaːta]

Eleanor H.

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Chickpea farinata fresh from the oven

two slices of chickpea farinata served with maple syrup

And today's word of the day:

Farinata [fariˈnaːta] - A simple culinary creation from humble pantry staples that is absolutely exquisite; a chickpea skillet cake – a creamy moist center within a thin crisped crust, served fresh from the oven; nutritious, deliciously satisfying, easy to make, easy to personalize.

A recent comment on our Dosas post caught my attention (a huge shoutout to Paul B. LeBeau @mockmill) – mention of a skillet pancake made with chickpea flour and olive oil – another way to feature a fabulous fabaceae, how could I resist making it? Chickpea flour is not as esoteric as it sounds, known as besan, it is widely available, but at 9pm last night when I saw the comment, I had to rely on our pantry supply of dried chickpeas and our Mockmill (a stone grain mill attachment for a Kitchenaid.) I ground chickpeas into besan, combined it with water, tucked the batter into the oven for an overnight ferment and headed to bed. This morning I whisked in some olive oil, added a bit of seasoned salt, poured the batter into a sizzling cast iron skillet and baked it for 10 minutes in a 500°F oven - absolutely divine! Certainly another keeper recipe...

While there are many versions of farinata, I offer this one as a "starter" recipe and once you try it you'll realize how easy it is to personalize it to your preferences, or as Paul says: "Now try it with all your different beans, peas, lentils...No end to the variety. Also you can jazz up the batter as you wish with various flours, herbs. spices... I think it's an exciting piece of food culture as we look for ways to move to a more plant-based nutritional model. Leaves room for much creativity!" So, ready to try it? Here's how -

Recipe Ingredients

  • ¾ cup besan
  • 1 cup lukewarm water
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • a dash of salt
  1. Combine besan and water, cover and let batter rest a few hours or overnight
  2. When ready to cook, whisk in 3 tablespoons oil and the dash of salt
  3. Preheat oven to 500°F and heat skillet over hot stove - we used a 10 inch cast iron skillet
  4. When skillet is smoking hot, swirl in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil quickly following with the batter
  5. Pop the skillet into the oven and cook ~10 minutes, adjusting cooking time as needed for a pancake with crispy edges and a crusty top
  6. Enjoy fresh from the oven. Of course with ours being for brunch, we had to try it with the season's fresh maple syrup...

Have a favorite plant-based recipe to share? Please let us know so we can spread the culinary lovin'. In this challenging time it's good to "Keep Calm & Cook On".

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