Farinata flatbread was something I discovered in Italy. As a gluten-free person, I missed out on quite a bit of Italian cuisine, and farinata appeared on the menu at a pizzaria in Torino, described as “chickpea gruel.” Gruel is a poor translation for a dish that is a delicious cross between polenta and pizza.
I love farinata
I really do love farinata flatbread. It’s one of my favourite go-to meals for a night when I can’t think of anything else to make. I love it because:
- It literally only takes 20 minutes to bake farinata. Just set up the batter in the morning, and you’ve got your dinner made.
- Farinata is the perfect way to use up whatever vegetables are in your kitchen. (See next section for a few of my favourite combinations.)
- Best of all, my kids think of it like pizza and always eat their fill (yea for eating beans!)
The key to delicious farinata flatbread is in the addition of flavourful toppings. Toppings can be either baked into the farinata or served on top. Here are a few of our favourite toppings.
- Baked Toppings:
- Sliced onion and tomato with grated cheddar
- Cooked cubes of butternut squash and crumbled blue cheese (this was what I was served in Italy)
- Sauteed mushrooms with rosemary and Parmesan cheese
- Fresh Toppings:
- Tomato with basil and goat cheese
- Arugula, mozzarella and balsamic vinaigrette
- Oven-roasted peppers, zucchini and eggplant with feta
- Serve with your favourite tomato sauce
- Farinata baked with broccoli and pine nuts, served with pesto on top.
- A creamy cheese sauce with fresh tomatoes
Farinata is a quick and delicious flatbread that is a cross between polenta and a pizza. Since it’s made with chickpea flour, it is also traditionally gluten free and vegan. Serve it with baked in pizza toppings or fresh vegetables and sauces. See the section above for some suggestions.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: Serves 2 1x
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Fermented
- Cuisine: Italian
- 2/3 cup chickpea flour (or garfava flour)
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 tbsp starter culture (optional -see notes)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Choice of toppings (see section above for suggestions)
- Combine all the ingredients in the preferment. Allow the chickpea flour to soak for at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours to fully hydrate. To add a sourdough-like flavour add 1 tbsp of culture to ferment the chickpea flour (see notes.)
- Oil a 9″ round ovenproof dish 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 1/4 inch thick.
- Add any toppings you want to bake into the farinata, or leave it plain and add toppings after baking. See the section above for some suggestions.
- Bake at 400 F for 20-30 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before serving.
- Chickpeas ferment really well with fresh miso. However, you can also use whey, sauerkraut brine or soured kombucha.
- I usually use a cast iron skillet (affiliate link) for a single batch of farinata. For a triple batch of farinata, I use a large cookie sheets with 1″ sides. Just avoid using a springform pan because the batter is runny and may leak.
Keywords: gluten free, grain free, vegan, egg free, dairy free, pizza, bread, pancake, polenta, fall, winter