Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Chickpeas - Two ways!

(Image Taken From The Internet)
 This is the first time I am doing a double post and it's all because of Nupur from One Hot Stove who is hosting Blog Bites, the Iron Chef Edition. Well, this months theme was 'One ingredient , Two ways!' All we needed to do was take one ingredient (anything from meat to a spice to a vegetable) and cook it in two different ways. At first I wanted to do a sweet and savory version using the same thing but because I was pressed for time and the deadline was inching closer, I decided to post something I had already made.
The ingredient that I chose is the humble chana! Yes, chickpeas my friend. So basic and yet so versatile. In my house I always have cans of chickpeas ready to whip up a chana masala or a chana pulav in a jiffy. No more soaking overnight and cooking in the pressure cooker.

As you know, I live in the middle east and absolutely love the multicultural cuisines out here. One such dish that I like is the falafel. The perfect falafel is crispy outside and soft and fluffy inside. But this can often go wrong in many places as some vendors fry them at one time and sell them later after they have gone all soft. Thus I decided to make my own and searched for a good recipe. I didn't have to look much and came across the Hummus 101 blog which has fabulous recipes. Do check it out for the recipe and many others. (Do not use canned chickpeas under any circumstances!) I served our falafel with tahini sauce and some pita bread. It can be had with ketchup as well. Anything goes with ketchup I think!

My second recipe is an Italian dish called Farinata, made with chickpea flour and water. Now, I had never eaten this anywhere before nor had I heard about it. But when I came across the dish on Cream Puffs In Venice, my interest was piqued. It sounded very similar to the besan chila or besan cake that we make back home. This is somewhat a cross between the two, the thickness being neither too thin like a chila nor too thick like the cake. Also, this is prepared in the oven and has oil in the batter. Next time I will probably make it a little more thinner as I wanted a crisp bottom. The farinata can be easily customized according to personal tastes (I added caramelized onions to mine) and I prefer it with a nice dipping sauce. Here is the recipe that I used at the Food and Wine website. I made mine in a large non stick stainless steel pan and it worked perfectly.

Happy Eating!!


  1. Farinata is such an intriguing dish- I've been meaning to try it for a while now. Thanks for your entry- I love both the dishes you made!

  2. They both look absolutely divine! :o I've never seen faranita before so this was particularly interesting to me! :D


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