Socca is a speciality of Nice, made with chickpea flour, water and olive oil

This is taken from Ottolenghi’s Plenty

It has two parts; the pancake and the tomato and onion topping

The chickpea flour pancake is a great gluten free invention as it can be used as a blini, pizza or savoury pancake base


  • 300g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Olive oil
  • 800g white onions, cut into thin rings
  • 2 tbsp. thyme leaves
  • ½ tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 230g chickpea flour
  • 450ml water
  • 2 egg whites
  • Himalayan sea salt and ground black pepper

(Optional extras: Before serving add a dollop of tomato chilli jam (see previous recipe) for that extra zing!)


  • Start with the tomatoes. Preheat the oven to 130c
  • Spread the tomatoes cut-side up in a small baking tin and sprinkle them with salt and pepper and a drizzle of oil
  • Roast for 25 minutes or until semi-cooked
  • Meanwhile, heat up 4 tbsp. olive oil in a large frying pan
  • Add the onions, thyme and some salt and pepper and cook on high heat, stirring for about a minute
  • Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • You want the onions completely soft, sweet and golden brown, but not very dark
  • At the end, stir in the vinegar, then taste and adjust for the seasoning
  • When you take the tomatoes out of the oven, increase the temperature to 170c
  • To make the pancake batter, put the chickpea flour, water, 1.5 tbsp. olive oil, ¾ tsp. salt and some pepper in a bowl
  • Mix well with a hand whisk until the batter is totally homogenous
  • In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites to soft peaks and gently fold into the batter
  • To prepare the pancakes, first line two baking sheet with greaseproof paper and brush the paper with a little bit of oil; set on the side
  • The take a small non-stick frying pan, roughly 14cm if you have one and brush it with a small amount of oil
  • Put it on a high heat for a couple of minutes, then reduce to medium high and pour in one quarter of the socca batter, it should be c. 5mm thick
  • After about 2 minutes air bubbles will appear on the surface and the pancake will have set on its base
  • Carefully use a palette knife to release the edges and turn over
  • Cook for another minute
  • Transfer to the lined baking sheet
  • Repeat with the rest of the batter
  • When all the pancakes are made, place in the oven for 5 minutes
  • To serve, spread the onion over the pancakes; they should be totally covered. Arrange the tomato halves on top
  • Place in the oven for 4 minutes to serve warm, or eat them cold

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