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Posts Tagged ‘socca’

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The name came into my head when I took the leftover Brussels sprouts out of the fridge with a view to frying them up for lunch today.

Bubble and Squeak--named for the noise they make in the pan while cooking.

Ho-hum–I didn’t hear a thing!

Wasn’t this quaintly-named concoction part of my mother’s post Christmas leftover strategy?

Dishes to go with cold turkey that only needed heating up?

Then a memory of added bacon floated into my mind.

Didn’t bacon get mixed into the brussels?

Well, bacon bits were already part of the feast on Christmas day–no harm in adding even more oven-crisped smoked bacon to the fried-up sprouts….

They’ll go nicely with a slice of the chickpea (socca) bread cooked in the oven as well.

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Add a poached/fried egg and “Bob’s your uncle”–to revive another phrase from my childhood.

 

1 small onion–chopped

1 clove of garlic–chopped

leftover cooked Brussels sprouts–chopped

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leftover Swiss chard–chopped (or you might have some OTHER leftover to try out in this recipe!)

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a few very thin rashers of bacon–smoked or green to taste

olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in a sauté pan and add the onion and garlic.

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Let them color a little before adding the brussels and the swiss chard (or other leftovers).

Mix together and cook gently for about 10 minutes–just long enough to heat them through.

Cook the bacon separately to a crisp state and scatter broken up bit over the sprouts.

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Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

We enjoyed it on a slice of the homemade socca–chickpea flour–bread.

And the only sound was “umm”!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Chickpea flour is also known as Besan and gram. A good substitute for wheat flour for those with gluten intolerance, it has other nutritional virtues and it tastes delicious.

This is street food and is still sold on the streets of Nice and Marseille in southern France. The pancakes are about 20 cm/8 inches wide and are good for parking things on – a fried egg or some bacon bits or as I did recently a spoonful of leftover green pepper and aubergine ratatouille.

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170 g/6 oz chickpea flour

400 ml/14 fl oz/1½ cups sparkling water

60 ml/2 fl oz cup olive oil

salt and pepper

1 tbsp rosemary leaves

olive oil for frying

  • Shake the flour gently through a sieve into a mixing bowl.
  • Add the water and whisk it in until you have a smooth runny paste.
  • Add the oil and whisk in.
  • Add pinches of salt and pepper plus the rosemary.
  • Leave to soak for 20–30 minutes.
  • When you are ready to make the pancake, heat a swirl of olive oil in a 25 cm/10 inch frying pan.
  • When the oil is hot, put a tablespoonful of the stirred mixture in the pan and let it spread.
  • Cook for a few seconds until you can ease the pancake loose with a spatula.
  • Now you have to turn it over–be bold!
  • Practice makes perfect and anyway the first attempt, if not completely successful, will be edible.
  • Cook the pancake a further few seconds and remove from the pan.
  • Both sides should be a golden brown.
  • Add a few twists of the pepper mill on each.
  • Add what you will and serve with a green salad.

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This goes by a number of names and several shapes–socca, farinata di ceci, foccacia di ceci–depending where you eat it.

It’s street food eaten on the move.

There’s a recipe for it in my book, Delicious Dishes for Diabetics.

But here is a slightly different version–I’ll call it chickpea bread.

I’m going to buy some spring onions in the market tomorrow–well it is Spring though it’s difficult to credit–grill them as in A lovely mess of spring onions and spread them over the bread.

The sun is forecast tomorrow and we’ll eat it sitting down!

Joy!

1 pint/580ml sparkling water

8oz chickpea flour–(aka gram, garbonzo flour and gluten and wheat free)

1 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp olive oil

half a small red onion–sliced fine

1 tbsp rosemary spears or more

salt and pepper

  • Pour the water into a large glass bowl.
  • Shake the flour and baking powder into the bowl through a sieve and stir it in.
  • Add the salt.
  • Add the olive oil and stir thoroughly.

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  • Cover the bowl and leave it to settle for a couple of hours.
  • When you are ready to bake the “bread”, stir in the onion and the rosemary.

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  • Heat the oven to 200C/400F.
  • Oil an oven tray and pour in the contents of the bowl, taking care it doesn’t slop over the sides.

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  • Gingerly lift it onto the top shelf of the oven and let it cook for 35 to 40 minutes.
  • It should have browned some.

IMG_6261Ease it out of the tray onto a serving board for easier slicing

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and grind some pepper over it.

(Good sautéed in olive oil the next day and eaten with a simple salad or try it topped with a fried or poached egg.)

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Socca Pancakes—the recipe below is from my book “Delicious Dishes for Diabetics” (available for pre-order on Amazon.co.uk)

socca pancake

These little discs are handy landing pads for pretty much anything you fancy. Today I had some left over roast chicken (also in the book) in the fridge; which I sautéed with some sweet onion slices, dry roast walnut pieces and some sliced celery in a little walnut and olive oil. The pancake base ( I covered mine with a pancake hat) added a slightly crunchy interest to the chicken filling.

The other day I added the spicy cauliflower recipe from my book—see below–and served a poached egg on the side.

Sauted cauliflower

Farinata or Socca (Pancake)

Serves 4

This is street food and is still sold on the streets of Nice and Marseille in southern France. These pancakes are about 20 cm/8 inches wide and are good for parking things on – a fried egg or some bacon bits or, as I did recently for a light supper, thinly sliced roast tomatoes.*

170 g/6 oz chickpea flour

400 ml/14 fl oz/1½ cups sparkling water

80 ml/2.5 fl oz/ cup olive oil

salt and pepper

1 tbsp rosemary leaves

olive oil

1. Put the flour in a mixing bowl. Add the water and whisk it in until smooth.

2. Add the oil and whisk it in. Add pinches of salt and pepper and the rosemary. You will have roughly half a litre (20 fl oz) of batter. Leave to soak for 20–30 minutes.

3. When you are ready to make the pancake, heat a swirl of olive oil in a 25 cm/10 inch frying pan. When hot, put a tablespoonful of the stirred mixture in the pan and turn the heat down a little. Cook for a few seconds until you can ease the pancake loose with a spatula or fish slice. Now you have to turn it over! Be bold! Practice makes perfect and anyway the first attempt, if not completely successful, will be edible.

Cook the pancake a further few seconds and remove from the pan.

Both sides should be a golden brown. Add a few twists of the pepper mill on each.

* Cook the tomatoes, sprinkled with a little salt and olive oil, for 20 minutes in a low oven (140°C/275°F/Gas Mark 1).

Cauliflower with Mustard Seeds and Fennel

Serves 4

Madhur Jaffrey, the Indian actress and cook, brings a touch of the sub-continent to the Mediterranean. This version of her recipe stands on its own and would be good served on the socca pancake or with the “comfort” lentils, and is excellent as a vegetarian main course.

6 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp black mustard seeds

2 tsp fennel seeds

3 cloves of garlic – finely chopped

¼ tsp turmeric

¼ tsp cayenne pepper

1 largish cauliflower – dismantled into small florets

4 tbsp hot water

salt to taste

1. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan. Put in the mustard and fennel seeds.

2. As soon as the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the garlic cloves. As they begin to turn colour, add the turmeric and cayenne and stir them in.

3. Add the cauliflower florets and turn them in the oily mixture. Add the water and turn the heat down.

4. Cook on a gentle heat, covered, for 20 minutes or until the cauliflower is just tender.

5. Uncover the pan and let any remaining water evaporate. Add salt to taste.

Socca (chick pea) pancake with sauted spicy cauliflower

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