Farinata was something I discovered in Italy… as a gluten-free person, I missed out on quite a bit of Italian cuisine. However, farinata appeared on the menu at a pizzaria in Torino, described as “chickpea gruel.” I think gruel is a poor translation rather than an accurate description. It’s more like a cross between a polenta and a pizza. (Though I do make polenta pizzas!)
Farinata pleases everyone in our house. I love it because:
-it literally takes 20 minutes to bake
-I can use up whatever vegetables are in my kitchen
-and the kids think of it like a pizza, and always eat loads (yea for eating beans!)
- ⅔ cup chickpea flour (or garfava flour)
- ¾ cup water
- 1 tbsp starter culture (kefir, sauerkraut liquid, kombucha, miso -optional)
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- Remaining Ingredients
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Choice of toppings (see notes)
- Combine all the prefermented ingredients. Allow to sit for at least 4 hours (even if you aren't using a starter culture).
- Heavily oil a 9" round pan with 2 tbsp olive oil. Pour batter into the pan and shake it around to combine it with the oil. The batter should be about ¼ inch thick.
- Then decorate with toppings. These will bake into the farinata, rather than just sit on top.
- Bake at 400 F for 20-30 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before serving.
-I usually make a triple batch to feed my family of 4. This recipe works well when scaled up.
-I use cast iron pans, or a large cookie sheets with 1″ sides for my farinata. The only trick is having sides on your pan, because the batter will be runny.
-Here are our favourite toppings: Cheese, onion and tomato, Cooked pumpkin and Gorgonzola, Parmesean and rosemary, but really I just use whatever I have in my kitchen. Mushrooms, peppers, zucchini, broccoli, greens.
-We usually eat our farinata straight up, though sometimes we also top it with tomato sauce or a creamy sauce.