I’m Gonna Get You Socca!

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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.

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