Socca is an unleavened pancake made from chick pea (gram/garbanzo) flour. It is a simple street food eaten from the coast in Nice, France to Genoa, Italy. In France it is referred to as socca and in Italy, farinata.

This recipe has the advantage of being entirely plant-based, vegan, gluten-free and grain-free. It is extremely versatile and you can add whatever seasonings or additions you like. You can bake it just with a simple seasoning with the chickpea flour and water  and omit the veggies (recipe and pictured below). I’ve made it a bit livelier so this recipe is my curried version, but you can add any seasonings or veggies you wish to the basic pancake recipe.

This is delicious served warm with a tomato salad or sliced up cold in a lunch box.

This recipe will give you a 6-8 inch pancake which should be no more than 4 mm thick. I have also successfully made it in a long loaf tin.

PRO CHEF TIP: Make double the quantity of the basic pancake mix for a thicker omelette style pancake. Or add it to a skillet pan with a drop of sunflower oil and use it to make a chick-pea scramble.

BASIC PANCAKE INGREDIENTS

Serves 2
50g gram (chick pea/garbanzo) flour
A good pinch sea salt
150ml warm water
1 teaspoon sunflower oil

METHOD
Sieve the gram flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Add the warm water and whisk well until it is well combined and a smooth batter. Leave at room temperature for at least 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 220C/Fan 200C/Gas 7.
Add the sunflower oil to a 6-8 inch cake tin and preheat the tin in the oven for 5 minutes. Remove it from the oven. Give the chickpea batter a quick whisk and pour it into the preheated pan. Whisk to combine the hot oil and the batter. Bake for 20-25 minutes until it is firm to the touch and brown and a bit crispy at the edges. Turn out onto a plate and cut into slices.

CURRIED SOCCA INGREDIENTS

Serves 2
50g gram (chick pea/garbanzo) flour
1 teaspoon medium madras curry powder
½ teaspoon ground cumin
A good pinch sea salt
150ml warm water
1 teaspoon sunflower oil
¼ red onion
1 small handful spinach leaves
2 tablespoons frozen peas, defrosted
1 handful coriander leaves (chopped)
A twist or two of black pepper

METHOD
Sieve the gram flour, spices and salt into a mixing bowl. Add the warm water and whisk well until it is well combined and a smooth batter. Leave at room temperature for at least 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 220C/Fan 200C/Gas 7.

Add the sunflower oil to a 6-8 inch cake tin and preheat the tin in the oven for 5 minutes. Remove it from the oven. Give the chickpea batter a quick whisk and pour it into the preheated pan. Whisk to combine the hot oil and the batter.  Add the sliced onion, spinach, defrosted peas, coriander leaves and black pepper.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until it is firm to the touch and brown and a bit crispy at the edges. Turn out onto a plate and cut into slices.