The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Fainá. Farinata. Socca. Choose your preferred name and enjoy. (GF)

AJP-AR's picture

Fainá. Farinata. Socca. Choose your preferred name and enjoy. (GF)

This is a very simple dish. In Argentina (and Uruguay) fainá is eaten as a pizza side (actually, is put on top or under the pizza slice). If the fainá is good I can skip pizza altogether.

The recipe is:

  • Chickpea flour: 200g
  • Water: 600g
  • Salt: 8-10g (see note)
  • Vegetable oil (the farinata and socca calls for olive oil, I use sunflower oil): 70g

First, put the oil in a pizza pan ( I use a round 32 cm one), stick in the oven and preheat until reach 200 ºC.

Mix the salt and water, and then add the chickpea flour and mix until fully integrated. Will be a runny batter.

When the oven has reached the target temperature, drop the preparation into the hot pizza pan (I use a pitcher and fill the pan straight in the oven to avoid manipulate the pan + hot oil combo). Close the oven and cook 40 minutes.

After the cooking time, remove from the oven and allow to cool down.


Salt is a must. Otherwise, fainá will be bland tasting. Socca is eaten with black pepper.

You can add caramelized onions, or cibloulette to the mix before put it into the pan (both popular in Argentina)

All pizza joints will offer fainá, but none of them will be gluten free. Supermarkets sells pre made faina mix, but it will contain wheat flour which is allowed by law. This recipe will be gluten free if you use gluten free chickpea flour.

clazar123's picture

I would dice up a few (or many) cloves of garlic for a delicious garlic "bread" and my oil would include olive oil and butter. Yum! 

It looks like it has 2 layers-a softer top layer and crispy bottom layer. Is that accurate? I have never had or heard of this type of bread-GF or wheat based- and am curious. No leavening, so there is no rise at all? Is it chewy or tender?

This resembles the GF experiment you did in shape. Is flatter bread your bread of choice?

AJP-AR's picture

About the garlic: Why not? >D However, I probably try with garlic powder (yeah, I know, is not the same taste) in several ratios (chickpea flour : garlic power : salt) until achieve consistent/desired flavors.

In this procedure, yes, it has a crispy bottom and a custard-like texture over it. In fact, I really like the taste of the crispy edges. I've never tried to put leavening agents, but I think they will not work without adding some gum (and diverting from the traditional recipe). You can cut the cooked fainá in strips and deep fry the strips to get some very close to the french panisse.

 This is not exactly a flat bread, but I can eat this as a snack. I prefer sandwich loafes or baguettes. I will bake a GF sandwich loaf this afternoon and post pictures later.

CliveBourne's picture

Nice post, I've loved farinata ever since I tasted it at a slow food festival in Asti
I've been letting the batter stand overnight, mainly in the hope that some fermentation might start to develop, and also to give the besan flour plenty of time to absorb the liquid

I've never tried cooking it straight away, I'll give it a go and see if I can tell the difference

I often add fennel seeds as well, lovely flavour