Bread & Pizza Italian Regional Recipes Starters

Farinata – The Genoese Chickpea Flatbread

Genoese Chickpea Flatbread, Farinata di Ceci Genovese – aka Farinata – is a very thin unleavened savoury flatbread made only with chickpea flour, water and Extra Virgin Olive Oil, a speciality typical of the city of Genoa, Liguria.

Farinata has no yeast, it’s gluten-free and dairy-free.

Farinata has very ancient origins that date back to Greek and Latins and that it is widespread in various areas of the Mediterranean.

It’s widespread alla over Italy, there are many versions that take a different name depending on the area of which they are typical. Besides the Genoese one, in Tuscany is called Cecìna (famous the Cecìna Pisana in Pisa), or Torta Livornese in Livorno. In Piedmont it is called Socca, in Sardinia it is called Fainè Sassarese (from the city of Sassari, Sardinia). Names change, but in the end it is still it: Farinata di Ceci.


Baking tray 30-32 cm diameter, Preparation time 20 minutes + 4 hrs resting, Cooking time 15/20 minutes

  • 350 g chickpea flour
  • 50 ml of EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil + a spoonful
  • 1 lt of water at room temperature
  • Salt, a pinch
  • Ground black pepper, to taste

Method

Dissolve the chickpeas flour with water by adding it a little at a time, trying not to make lumps. Add a pinch of salt and keep stirring until you get a velvety and homogeneous batter.

Let the mixture rest for a minimum of 4 hours, stirring occasionally. Do not put it in the fridge. It may be even better if you leave it 6 to 7 hours to rest. If you make it in the evening, you can let it to rest overnight.

Foam may form on the surface, just remove it with a skimmer.

Add 50 ml of Evoo, salt and pepper to the mixture, mix again.

Grease a baking tray with Evoo and pour over the chickpea mixture.

Tip: Farinata must be very thin, not exceeding 1 cm in thick.

Bake in the preheated static oven to 250 C for 10 minutes in the lower part of the oven. Afterwards, move the pan to the upper part of the oven and let it cook for other 10 mins to 220 C until Farinata get a golden-hazelnut colour on top. It should be slightly moist inside.

Sprinkle with pepper and eat it warm.

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