Today I want to share with you one of our traditional recipes, more precisely it is typical of the region I am from, Liguria, a beautiful stripe of land between low mountains and the Riviera, in the north west of Italy.
The local name for this recipe is actually “panissa”, a genoese (dialect of the town of Genoa) term to describe a batter made with simple and unexpensive ingredients like chickpea flour, water, salt and pepper that once cold and solid can be either fried or eaten just like that.
The idea for this post actually came during the holidays, while D. and I were visiting family. One day we all had lunch at a small and cozy restaurant on the Riviera and they brought an appetizer while we were waiting for our orders to arrive. D. was curious to know what those fried cubes were made of, so I asked the staff if that was indeed “fried panissa” and most of all if that was gluten and dairy-free. The answer was absolutely yes, so D. tasted one little cube, then dove into them, happy likea kid with candies, but with his allergen-free appetizer! He had never had “panissa” before, so I thought I definitely needed to make it at home too and cook a little piece of happiness for him 😉
So here I am, sharing some fried happiness with you too:
- start by thouroughly mixing the water with the chickpea flour, salt & pepper, until it’s a smooth mix with no clumps
- put the mix in a sauce pan on low heat and keep stirring for 10-15 minutes, or until the batter gets firmer and clumps start to form
- now pour the batter in a pan and spread it out, at least one inch thick or more
- let it cool down for a while then into the fridge for at least an hour
- when an hour has passed, pour at least 3 inches of seed oil in a small, tall sauce pan, and while it’s heating up (to know it’s ready insert a toothpick, if the oil makes tiny bubbles, it’s time to fry) cut the “panissa” into potato wedges-like sticks and fry them 4-5 at a time, until they get golden
- lay them on kitchen paper to remove the oil in excess, add a pinch of salt, paper or other spices if you want and serve them still warm and crispy 😉
Trust me, you will love these and once you’ve tried them, you will want to make a double batch and offer it as an appetizer before a dinner with friends and family. It will be a hit!
Speaking of which, stay tuned for another tasty and super quick dish you can make with non-fried “panissa”!
Ingredients (2 servings)
150 gr / 5.2 oz glutenfree chickpea flour
500 gr / 17.6 oz water
half teaspoon salt
pinch of black pepper
seed oil (for deep-frying)
Ready in: 1,5 hour