I’m Gonna Get You Socca!

September 16, 2013 | By | COMMENTS

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It’s time to admit that my love affair with chickpeas has gone too far. Not only did I post about making a big pot of chickpeas a week ago, and also a salad of roasted beets, carrots and chickpeas that week, I already have another chickpea dish to blog about coming up–one with tomatoes, basil and zucchini. I need to be stopped. But what’s this I see at my local fancy supermarket? A bag of chickpea flour? Chickpea FLOUR? Oh my, I think I need to buy this. I think I need to make something with this. CHICKPEA FLOUR. I’m sold.

Here’s said bag:

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Oh imagine the possibilities!

Actually, I couldn’t really imagine any possibilities for chickpea flour so I did some Googling and came across David Lebovitz’s recipe for socca. I once did a post called “Socca” and it wasn’t this thing at all; my socca was an Italian beef, cabbage and potato casserole. This socca–David’s socca–is the much more famous socca, a chickpea pancake that’s a signature street food in Nice.

Here’s how easy it is. In a bowl, whisk together 1 cup chickpea flour (you can find it at Whole Foods), 3/4 teaspoon sea salt, 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin (I used more than that; like 1/2 teaspoon):

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Now add 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water AND 2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil and mix it all together:

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Cover with plastic wrap and wait two hours. If you can’t wait two hours, wait one hour. If you can’t wait one hour, wait 30 minutes. But 2 hours is ideal.

When you’re ready to make your socca, grease a cast iron skillet with olive oil…

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…turn on the broiler, and stick that skillet underneath with the door closed. Meanwhile, pour your socca batter into a measuring cup.

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When your cast iron skillet is good and hot, carefully pour in a thin layer of the batter just to coat the bottom.

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Stick back under the broiler and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, checking every so often. You want it deep, dark golden brown on top and almost burned around the edges. See?

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At that point, take it out of the oven and use an offset spatula to detach it from the hot pan. Lift on to a cutting board and sprinkle with lots of salt and drizzle with a little olive oil. (You can see that at the top of this post.) That’s your socca.

What does it taste like? It tastes like a warm cracker that’s super crispy on top (think: thin-crust pizza) and soft on the bottom; the fact that it’s made of chickpeas, though, makes it feel more virtuous than a flour-based cracker. You can count is as protein, if you’d like…I certainly did. Since I made this in the morning, I served it with eggs and an arugula salad: the socca’s great for dipping into the yolk.

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There you are, then, my latest chickpea obsession. Socca. Next up: a chickpea dinner with socca on the side. I TOLD YOU I’M OBSESSED.

Tags: , , ,

Categories: Bread and Pizza, Recipes

  • Amy

    If you have chick pea flour left over, I highly recommend David Lebovitz’s recipe for Panisses – basically fries made of chick pea flour (also on his website.) Seriously delicious sprinkled with coarse sea salt, with a glass or 3 of cold rose. Easy too – pan fried, no vats of boiling oil involved.

  • limric

    Recently made zucchini pancakes with chickpea flour! A great invention.

  • jlix

    I make this every sunday BUT: I slice up onions and sauté them in the oil, along with a small handful of rosemary (no cumin) plus a lot of freshly ground pepper. I pour all the batter into the skillet at once and sprinkle some olives, cut up tomatoes– whatever I have that looks good. Finally a good handful of freshly grated parmesan if I feel cheesy. 400 degrees for 45 minutes.

  • Nina

    You can use it a lot in Indian food too. The appetizer section in “660 Curries,” my current favorite Indian cookbook, calls for it a lot– as a pakora batter, or pancake form, or as a curry-thickener. (One note about 660 Curries though– start by using half the salt he calls for, for real).

  • Mark Walley

    I like your blog partly because your influences are so American. I use chickpea flour all the time because it’s huge in Indian cooking and indian cooking is huge in the UK where I live. But I’d never thought to use it like this. Totally am going to do this at some point.

  • http://www.thousandstorykitchen.com/ MC@TSK

    Cool- and this title takes me back to watching that movie in college a lot…remember it?

  • Thuy
  • Lea-Laetitia

    My family comes from this region in France and I must say this morning (I live in NYC) I shed a tear at work while reading your post… so thank you !! and thanks for the recipe of course…
    On the streets of Nice I usually have it with LOTS of pepper and fried fish (the tiny ones, you are supposed to eat the whole thing… ).

  • Erin Lyall

    Nice… I love Nice. And a warm hunk of socca in a paper wrapper, salty and peppery and burned on the edges. This looks awesome. I’m doing it.

  • Suzanne in Austin TX
  • your mom

    I am never going to let my kids eat this it sucks