This farinata (e.g Italian Chickpea Pancake) recipe uses Crown Prince Squash but any winter squash (or summer squash!) would work. Or try other roast veg such as peppers, sprouting broccoli or tomatoes).
Makes 4 small pancakes
· 75g Chickpea/gram flour
· Olive oil
· ¼ to ½ of a Crown Prince Squash
· 2tsp Fresh herbs (thyme, rosemary, sage)
· 170g Water
· 1 white onion
· Lemon (optional)
1. Make the chickpea batter by whisking the gram flour, salt, pepper and a drizzle (about 5g) of olive oil with 170g of cold water. Whisk well.
2. Add thyme leaves, chopped rosemary or sage leaves if using.
3. Leave the batter to sit for at least 1 hour or in the fridge overnight. If there a few lumps, whisk the batter after it’s sat for a ½ and hour and it will smooth out.
4. Wash the squash well, scrubbing if necessary. Cut in half or quarters. Only about ¼ of the squash is needed for this recipe, but all of it can be roasted or poached and used in other recipes.
5. Scoop out the seeds.
The seeds can be boiled in salt water for 10 minutes and roasted with the squash flesh.
6. Cut the squash into chunky wedges. Coat with oil, salt & pepper. Roast in a 200°C oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown and caramelised (no need to turn over).
7. While the squash is baking, top & tail the onion, cut in half and peel. Slice into thin crescents. Add a little salt and let it sit, to draw out some moisture.
8. When the squash is out of the oven and is cool enough, roughly scoop the flesh out with a tablespoon.
9. Fry the squash chunks in a little olive oil, salt & more pepper. This step is optional, but it adds a little more flavour to the plain squash.
10. Keep the oven on and increase the temperature to it’s highest setting.
11. For the pancake, whisk the batter again (as the mixture may have sedimented) and heat a small (oven proof) frying pan. Once hot, add a drizzle of olive oil (just enough to coat the pan) and heat. When the oil is hot, add a thin layer of the batter mix.
12. Let it cook in the pan for 2-3 minutes. The edges will turn brown and the top will start to dry out. Season the top with salt & pepper.
13. Add some of the sliced onion and squash pieces to the top of the pancake. Season again and drizzle with a little olive oil.
14. Add to the oven and bake for 10-15minutes. The squash will warm through, the onions will soften and brown slightly.
15. Carefully remove the pan from the oven. Put the pancake on a serving dish and top with lemon zest or lemon juice (optional).
This recipe uses a oven-proof frying pan. If you don’t have one, a frying pan can be used and the top cooked under a medium grill (keep and eye on it). Alternatively, use a small metal baking dish (e.g. sandwich cake tin). Heat the olive oil up in it on the hob or in the oven. Bake for 5 minutes before adding the toppings and baking for 10-15 more minutes.
Flavours chickpea flour isn't the most exciting ingredient, so feel free to add flavourings to the batter (e.g. more herbs, lemon zest, or pesto and always plenty of black pepper)
The squash can be roasted with spices, or marinated after roasting for extra flavour before adding to the pancake. Try chilli flakes, garlic powder, lemon or paprika.