So here we are. Summer is almost over and I can’t say I mind all that much. I know I’m supposed to, being a New Jerseyan and all. But if I’m being honest, I didn’t go to the shore at all this year… and I’m cool with it. Well, except for one rainy stretch of days in Cape May which, while a lot of fun, didn’t really count as beach time.
Anywho, with a brand new semester and all its craziness right around the corner I’ve been trying to spend as much fun, relaxing time in the kitchen as possible. Nothing like bumping up some tunes and making a giant mess out of everything 🙂
I recently purchased chickpea flour at the store with the intention to fulfill my years-long desire to make socca. I read the recipe in Mediterranean Harvest years ago and have been wanting to make it ever since. It just sounded so effortlessly unique and delicious.
While I was in Nice a couple years ago, which is socca’s official homeland, it was one of my must-do’s during my visit. My “must-do” lists while traveling are mostly just a list of foods I want to try and restaurants I want to eat at. So I found a little place on a gorgeously sunny summer afternoon and ordered up my first socca, with olives, and a glass of rosé.
One of the most satisfying parts of eating socca is that you can use your hands and not feel like a rabid animal, even if you’re eating your socca with that amount of vigor. When the server came and cleared my plate, I ordered another. And another glass of wine. The look he gave me was one of surprise with possibly a hint of disdain, but he obliged. The socca was the trifecta of savory, salty, and olive-oily. It was absolutely delicious and was probably one of the best afternoons I’ve spent by myself. Ahhh.
So, fast-forward to now and I finally get my hands on some chickpea flour. You can imagine my delight! I made two versions of these, one plain and one with cured black olives. Socca recipes usually call for a socca pan (yep, that’s a thing) or even a pizza pan. I had neither so my big cast-iron skillet got to come out and play. These would be great to cut into pieces and share as an appetizer. Or, you could sit outside with your pups and enjoy the whole thing to yourself. Well, almost the whole thing. I did share with the dogs because although I love socca, I’m not a monster.
I browsed online and saw versions where people have added some cooked onions or different herbs. Personally, I think socca lends itself to a nice salty counterpart, but I’m sure you could throw just about anything in here and it would work.
- 1½ c. chickpea flour
- 1¼ tsp. salt
- 3 c. water
- 2 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for pan
- Olives, pitted and halved (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 500F.
- In a medium bowl, whisk to combine chickpea flour, salt and water until smooth. Whisk in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Let sit for 30min-1hr.
- Place the cast-iron skillet (or socca/pizza pan) in the oven for 5min. to heat up. Whisk the batter once more. If using olives, add now.
- Pour 1-2 tablespoons of oil into hot skillet and brush to cover.
- Pour about ⅓ of the batter into pan and swirl to coat bottom.
- Put back in oven and cook for 20-25min. until top is browned.
- Carefully remove with spatula and serve warm or at room temperature.