One of the sacks lurking in my store cupboard is a 25 kilo sack of gram flour that I inherited from a lady who was moving into a smaller house and had ordered the sack from Approved Food thinking it was a 5 kilo size.
To let you know – 25 kilos of gram flour is the size of a sack of potatoes …….. its a LOT of flour to use up. Must have been quite a shock to her when the courier arrived, can you imagine?
However – its high protein, gluten free and best of all it was FREE!!! so i am on a mission to find as many delicious ways of using the stuff as I can …………. after all if we are eating the gram flour we are not needing to buy other things in its place and it can actually be used in quite a few lovely dishes.
But the one that I mentioned briefly a few days ago (and I have been pestered for ever since ………. you know who you are ladies!!! LOL) is for a flatbread from the south of France called Socca.
Now my memories of this is big flat pans being cooked in the open air over wood fires …………… cold crisp wine, socca and olives and long evenings as the sun dips down.
But my “created in a kitchen in Cupar” version will have to suffice until global warming produces the balmy climes of Frejus in my neck of the woods.
ROSEMARY AND OLIVE SOCCA
- 175 g gram flour (chickpea flour)
- 325 ml warm water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
- 12 olives – pitted and smashed up.
- Black pepper and sea salt to season
Strip the leaves of rosemary from the twigs and roughly chop. I love rosemary and my Dad bought me a bush for my birthday last year …. its easy to step outside and snip a few leaves whenever I need them…… dried herbs would be fine – even a sprinkling of mixed herbs would be cool.
Remove the stone from about a dozen black olives …….. i do this by smashing them with the heel of my hand and picking out the stones. Tear the flesh into shreds.
Heat your oven to 220. Place your baking tray (this is my 9″ x 11″) swiss roll tray into the oven for at least ten minutes to get really hot. Dribble on a tablespoon of olive oil to grease the tray and return to the oven for a minute or two to get hot.
Pour the batter on to the hot tray and sprinkle with the rosemary.
Then toss the olives into the batter too – the batter will be sizzling at the edges at this point a little like a yorkshire pudding. Season the top with plenty of black pepper and some sea salt.
After 15 – 20 minutes the socca will be a dark golden colour and set all the way through the middle with the edges going slightly darker and crispier. Leave to cool slightly and it will cut into lovely slices ……….. about 6mm thick and chock full of flavour.
Its like a thick savoury pancake – chewy and satisfying. In fact when making pizza for friends who are gluten intolerant I make this to use as the base – works a treat!!
How to eat? Well ……….. any place you might grab a piece of bread really! Lovely with soupe au pistou (vegetable and pesto soup), with Salade Nicoise, Bean and tuna salad …………. or just with some lovely cheese and sliced tomatoes. Wine is of course optional (outwith my budget this month but optional)
DS2 likes his with a piece of cheddar slipped between two slices and made into a “toasted sammich” – cosmopolitan little red-head that he is LOL.
And of course you can ring the changes with flavourings – oregano to make a pizza base, cracked pepper and a grating of parmesan, roasted red onions are great,chopped sage is gorgeous ….. just think “South of France” and you won’t go too far wrong.
Lovely memories of fabulous holidays …………. FREE from a bag of flour – you can’t beat that can you??
So what dishes do you love that take you straight back to places you have visited? What do you wish you recreate at home that would evoke those great memories?