Monday, February 16, 2015


A couple of years ago, Daniel and I were lost in Pisa, Italy. We had gotten lost after taking one wrong road after another on our way from the Leaning Tower of Pisa to the city center.

Hungry and unsure if we would find another place to eat, we stopped into the first restaurant that we found. It was a casual pizza joint, similar to the mom and pop takeout pizzerias in US cities. No frills, just a counter with slices and a few tables.

We were the only ones there, so we were unsure whether this was a good idea, but we were starving. So we ordered a couple slices of pizza. We also noticed this strange thing on one of the pizza racks, which looked like a sad, empty pizza devoid of toppings, but with an extra-thin yellow crust. We ordered a slice of that too. Why not, we thought. Farinata, the little paper sign said.

We tried the farinata, nibbling off small bites. It was heaven. It was so good that I tried to get Daniel to have most of it. Likewise, he tried to insist on giving it to me. In the end, we shared it pretty equally. I may have gotten an extra bite.

This is now one of the recipes in regular rotation in our home. It's high protein and high fiber. It makes for a satisfying snack on its own. You can portion it into zip-lock bags and take it on trips with you. Or serve it as lunch with lots of homemade bruschetta on top.

We're in the bad habit of making this without measuring and having it turn out different every time. We measured this time, though. We've also tried making this with other oils, such as avocado oil. Don't use other oils. The flavor of the olive oil is important here.


2 1/2 c chickpea flour
1/2 c olive oil, plus 4 tbsp for greasing the pans
4 c water
1 tsp lemon pepper blend (ours includes salt; if not, use 1/2 tsp lemon pepper and 1/2 tsp salt)

Preheat convection oven to 400°F, or regular oven to 425°F.

Stir all ingredients in a large mixing bowl until there are no more lumps.

Grease 2 large baking sheets with 2 tbsp of olive oil per pan. Be thorough and generous, because farinata likes to stick to pans. Besides, the olive oil will give it a nice olive taste and a crunch around the outer edges.

Pour batter into baking sheets. Carefully transfer to oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges are browned. The time may vary depending which baking sheets you own. If you see any edge starting to burn, take out the baking sheet immediately.

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