Farinata is one of those things that almost no one has heard of, or tasted, yet it is so simple and delicious that no one seems to be able to explain why. I’d been meaning to try it for well over a year, but for some reason never got round to it. This process of forgetfulness seems to repeat itself and in the wake of my blog is a perpetual trail of dead and forgotten ideas. Indeed, had it not been for the fact that Shira, of in pursuit of more, posted her own recipe for farinata a week or so ago, this probably would have been accidentally consigned to the archives of my mind. Thank goodness that wasn’t the case; as I’ve already mentioned, farinata is exceptionally flavoursome and FrugalFeeding really couldn’t do without it! Thanks, Shira!
Farinata is essentially a cross between flat bread and a thick pancake. To make it, all one need do is mix gram (chickpea) flour with water and whatever additional flavourings one desires, before baking it in the oven until golden brown. It can then be cut up and served as a side dish, or as a starter before a main meal. There isn’t much more to it than that, except that it does a great job of highlighting just how interesting and versatile gram flour can be. Indeed, it is a food, a facial exfoliant and can be used as a substitute for egg. Not only this, but because it is composed entirely of chickpeas it contains no gluten. Perhaps some experimentation is order to assess whether it would be suitable for cake making – I doubt it.
You may have noticed that I’ve not been blogging quite as much of late. This isn’t because I’m becoming bored of the whole food thing… far from it – my life is simply going through a spot of change. Once things have settled down a little I shall explain exactly what’s been going on – it’s very exciting, I promise. But for now, you’ll have to content yourself with these little slices of legume heaven. Enjoy!
Rosemary & Garlic Farinata
• 200g gram flour, sieved
• 650ml warm water
• 2 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
• 2 cloves of garlic, mashed and finely chopped
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• A generous pinch of salt
• A substantial twist of black pepper
1. Whisk the water into the gram flour, leave no lumps. Tip in the garlic and rosemary, season and leave to stand for 30 minutes to an hour.
2. Heat the oven to 220C and pour the olive oil into a large earthenware casserole dish. Heat the oil up until smoking and pour the batter in. Pop immediately back in the oven and bake until golden brown – this should take 40-50 minutes.
3. Serve with salad and chutney, as a side dish or a replacement for bread.
Cost: Gram flour is extremely inexpensive and since rosemary is easily found on local bushes, this recipe is exceptionally cost effective. Indeed, the entire batch of farinata should set one back no more than around 70p – that’s a great price, even for a side.