- 2 cups lukewarm water
- 1-½ cups garbanzo bean flour, (aka chickpea flour)
- 1-½ teaspoon kosher salt, (about 1 tsp fine table salt)
- ½ teaspoon finely minced rosemary leaves, optional
- 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided (use 3 tablespoons for the batter, and 2 tablespoons for the pan)
- freshly ground black pepper to taste
Farinata is nothing more than a simple garbanzo bean flour
batter, which is spiked with olive oil and salt, and baked in a very hot oven. The surface gets crusty, the edges get crispy, and yet the inside stays moist and sort of creamy. The texture is easy to explain, but the taste, not so much.
This is so simple and subtly flavored that it’s a kind of
hard to describe. You may be familiar with the taste of garbanzo (aka chickpeas) in things like hummus and falafel, but here it’s not combined with other strongly flavored ingredients, and so you’re getting pure, un-cut bean. It’s going to be easier for me if you just make it and taste for yourself.
1. Put flour in a large bowl. Gradually add enough warm water, while whisking, until it forms a thin batter. When completely smooth, cover batter and let sit for 2 hours, then skim off the foam on top. Add salt, 3 tablespoons olive oil, and finely minced rosemary, and mix well.
2. Preheat oven to 500˚. Heat a 10” cast iron pan on high. When it is smoking hot, pour in olive oil. As soon as the first wisp of smoke appears, pour in batter. Transfer pan to oven and bake for 25–30 minutes, until golden-brown on top. Garnish with fresh pepper and serve immediately.
Pan Note: I know many will ask, so I’ll just say it now; yes, you can use any oven-safe 10-inch pan to make this, but I have a tough time believing it will come out as wonderfully textured as it would if you use a cast-iron skillet. Putting the batter into a smoking hot pan seems to be one of the big keys here.