Cecina – chickpea flour pancake

The cecina or farinata is a traditional street food from the Tuscan Riviera and the Liguria region. People use to eat a slice of cecina in an open focaccia bread named “schiacciata” for a snack or a quick dinner.

This dish is especially popular in Livorno (Tuscany region) where it is called “5 e 5”, because in the past 1 cecina and 1 focaccia costed only 5 lire each.

 

cecina1

Ingredients for 8 servings ( oven trays 40 x40 cm sized)

500 gr chickpea flour (∼ 4 cups)
1 liter of water  (∼ 4 cups)
extra virgin olive oil ( ∼ small cup)
1 tbsp salt
fresh rosemary and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Pour in a large bowl the flour and slowly add and mix the water with a wooden spoon. Add the salt and and continue whisking well to remove lumps until the mixture looks smooth and creamy.
Cover and let the batter rest for about 8 hours, overnight is perfect. If the mixture has produced the foam remove it and mix very well again. Pre – heat the oven to 200° C (400° F). To work the best way you need a large pan with low borders about 40 x 40cm sized (like pizza-pan).

We love the cecina thicker than the traditional one which should not be more than ¼ inch, ½ cm deep, so we baked all the batter in one spot. If you wish try the original one use two pans.

Pour the oil in the pizza-pan, enough to cover the bottom, add the mixture that should be floating on top. (see the picture below).

IMG_5388

Add the rosemary and bake until crunchy and crispy on the outside but soft inside (∼ 30 min).

Sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper.

 

Tips: add finely chopped soft paste cheese like Pecorino or Colonnata lard to enjoy it!

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