Socca, and its cousins farinata, cecina, tortillata, or fainá (among others), is probably the best gluten-free bread you’ve never heard of. At its most basic, it consists of three ingredients: chickpea (garbanzo bean0 flour, water, and olive oil. These ingredients are mixed together, the batter is poured into a hot pan or skillet, baked until crisp and brown.
Simple, huh? As you can imagine, any food that simple has be delicious and flexible. Socca (and relatives) takes on different flavors based on how you choose to season it. Want to keep it basic? Fresh rosemary is traditional. Thyme is delicious. Za’atar is unusual — or not, since this dish has a Middle Eastern cousin. Even Indian spices work well here.
Socca is traditionally thin and a bit crisp on the outside, but still flexible. Farinata, or those I’ve encountered, are a bit thicker. Much of the final product depends on how thick your batter is — for the recipe, I’m suggesting a medium-weight batter. Make it thicker or thinner according to your taste.
Hint: since this is a great flatbread, you can also treat it a bit like a pizza, with great toppings!
By June 30, 2014Published:
- Yield: 2 flatbreads
- Prep: 10 mins
- Cook: 15 mins
- Ready In: 2 hrs 25 mins
Socca, a naturally gluten-free flatbread, is made from chickpea flour, water, and olive oil. This simple recipe is perfect for appetizers or even pizzas. It's great for those nights when you don't want to cook...or those nights when your bookclub is standing around the kitchen island, noshing on small bites!
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1/2 cup olive oil divided
- 1 1/2 tablespoons rosemary divided
- 3/4 - 1 teaspoon kosher salt divided
- 1/2 - 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Whisk together flour, 2 tablepoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon rosemary, half the salt, and 1 cup water in a medium bowl until smooth. Cover, and let the batter sit for 30 minutes to two hours. Longer is better so the flour absorbs the water.
- Heat your broiler to high, adjusting the top rack to about six inches below the broiler. Preheat a 10-inch cast iron skillet under the broiler for a few minutes.
- Carefully, using mitts, remove the skillet and swirl about 3 tablespoons olive oil around bottom of the skillet. Pour in half the batter, tilting pan to spread it over bottom of pan. You want a thin layer of batter -- the thicker your flatbread, the longer it takes to cook through.
- Broil until crisp and browned all over, 3 - 5 minutes. The top should begin to brown and form blisters. If the top cooks faster than the rest of the flatbread, you can move the skillet to a lower rack in the oven.
- Remove from oven, and sprinkle with some of the remaining rosemary, salt, cumin, and pepper. Since you're making two soccas, save some of the herbs and spices for the second flatbread.