Socca. Finally.

Post image for Socca.  Finally.

by JL Fields on May 2, 2012

There are some food blog trends I just don’t jump on right away.  I fought the green smoothie. Then I made one and wondered what took me so long. Love affair!  It took me quite awhile to try overnight oats and when I did I knew why I resisted. They are not at all for me.

Then I heard about socca.  A lot. I saw many recipes and clearly this was very easy to make and quite the rage. I simply wasn’t interested.  Over the weekend, however, I decided it was time to finally try this “flat bread.”  I put out a request on Twitter, asking for favorite socca recipes that required baking (versus stove-top or broiler methods). Katelyn of New Kid on the Vegan Block directed me to her favorite recipe.

I followed Katelyn’s recipe and used a 15-inch cast iron skillet (it’s huge but the only cast iron that I have).  The only thing I would change next time is to bake it a few minutes longer and skip the broiler step. As you can see, my broiler is quite uneven and browned it way too much on one side; it was actually a gorgeous golden color straight out of the oven.

One bite of the socca and I got it. It rocks.

Inspired by a tweet from The Spicy Vegan about a fabulous bean and tomato dip she created in the Vita-Mix I decided to whip up a dip/spread for the socca.  I had cooked chickpeas in the refrigerator (made the day before, in the pressure cooker, with a little olive oil, garlic, onion and lime juice) and dumped one and a half cups (about the same amount as a full can of chickpeas) into the Vita-Mix. I added a can of diced tomatoes (with juice), two cloves of garlic, a pinch of cumin and the juice of half a lime.  I blended it for less than a minute and the result was a very creamy dip / spread.

Next time I will use less tomatoes or more chickpeas, as the tomato flavor was strong when I sampled it from the blender.  However, once I spread it on the socca and took a bite, the tomato taste was very tempered.  This piece of socca and dip, with a side salad, made for a perfect lunch.

Fully on the socca bandwagon, the next day I decided to try a pizza.  The result wasn’t quite socca and it wasn’t quite pizza. It was, however, quite delectable.

Socca-Style Pizza “Bread”

by JL goes Vegan: Food & Fitness with a side of Kale

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 1 + 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (I use iodized sea salt)
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives (fresh)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato sauce
  • Chopped or crumbled seitan, to taste (I used about 1/4 cup)
  • Baby bella mushrooms, sliced (optional), to taste
  • Chopped onion, to taste
  • Mozzarella cheese (vegan – I used Daiya), to taste
  • Oregano (dry), to taste
  • Salt + Pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Add water, flour, oil and garlic to a high-speed blender.
  2. Blend for less than 30 seconds.
  3. Leave batter in the blender for 30 minutes.
  4. Place a 9-inch cast iron skillet in the oven and preheat the skillet and oven at 450F.
  5. After at least 30 minutes, blend the batter again for 5 seconds (just flip the blender on and off to mix it a bit).
  6. Remove the skillet from the oven and spray with a vegetable oil spray.
  7. Add onion and chives to the batter and pour into the skillet.
  8. Place the skillet back in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  9. Remove the skillet from the oven.
  10. Layer tomato sauce, seitan, mushrooms, onion, cheese, oregano, and salt and pepper on the socca.
  11. Return the skillet to the oven, reduce heat to 425F and bake for 7 – 9 minutes.
  12. Remove the skillet from the oven and let the pizza sit for at least five minutes before slicing.

Serve and enjoy!

Notice the chives in the upper crust?

The onions on the bottom?

This is such an easy way to enjoy a pizza under 30 minutes, with a gluten-free crust.  I loved it. I was reminded of the “pizza bread” we ate when I was younger (There was a scary version in the school cafeteria and at home I recall a simple process of putting pizza ingredients on half of a crusty loaf of bread and heating in the broiler). It is a very soft, gooey, melt-in-your-mouth, bread-like pizza.

File this under kitchen confessions – Earlier I mentioned that I only own a 15-inch cast iron skillet, yet the pizza calls for a 9-inch skillet.  I knew I wanted a thicker “crust” so I grabbed the mold from my 9-inch spring form pan and placed it in the skillet. I poured the batter into the mold.  This happened:

I never said I was genius in the kitchen.

I just used a spatula to pull away the socca that seeped through and, voila, pizza!

What’s your favorite socca recipe?  Share links!

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  • http://twitter.com/TheBlissfulChef Christy Morgan

    I’m even slower, I’ve never had overnight oats or chia pudding! This looks delish though! What app do you use for your recipes?

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       Do you mean what app to insert recipes into posts? Recipage.com  Love it!

  • VeganVersion

    This looks so great! I often make something similar but have always known it as Cecina. I have also heard it, or a variation of it called farinata.  Here is one of my favorite ways to eat it– with onions and fennel seeds. http://www.theveganversion.com/2011/10/onion-cecina-with-fennel-seeds.html 

    I think I am going to make some when I get home :)

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       I added onions and chives based on our weekend web conversation!

  • http://theunintentionalvegan.com/ Ashley F.

    I’ve been addicted to socca for the last few weeks, but I have yet to try it as pizza! That tomato and bean dip would probably be a great replacement for just straight tomato sauce on a socca pizza – and now I’m hungry :)

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

      Oh, great idea re: dip for pizza sauce!

  • Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table

    I can’t believe you haven’t been making this all along! :)  It is amazing stuff – I love making Mexican-style pizzas with it.  I’ve even blended beets into the batter for a cool purple base.

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       LOVE the beet idea!

  • http://twitter.com/NewKidVeganBlk Katelyn Sornik

    So glad you got on board and enjoyed it! That pizza looks amazing!

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       You helped! :)

  • http://healthygirlskitchen.blogspot.com/ wendy@Healthygirlskitchen

    I did the socca thing once–when I was renovating our kitchen and I made it in our toaster oven. It wasn’t met with rave reviews in our house, but maybe that’s because I didn’t really do anything with it except dip it in some maple syrup. I might have to try again with your inspiration!

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       Try it in the oven – I think you’ll love it!

  • http://www.onearabvegan.com/ Nada (One Arab Vegan)

    I ADORE socca, and socca pizza even more! I first got into it when I stumbled accross this recipe http://mynewroots.blogspot.co.uk/2011/04/meatless-mondays-with-martha-stewart.html (also a GREAT blog, by the way) and have since conjured up many a socca creation! This is totally going to be a shameless plug but here are some of my recipes:
    Beet, Hummus and Avocado Green Socca Pizza: http://goo.gl/mzCiUMaple Cinnamon Breakfast Socca: http://goo.gl/PNxhmSocca “Manakeesh” (savoury Middle Eastern pastries): http://goo.gl/tsQJvBroccoli, Avocado and Sweetpea Hummus Socca: http://goo.gl/M9mZ0

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       Great links!  Thanks!

  • http://www.choosingraw.com/ Gena

    I have yet to make socca, but chickpea pancakes are a regular in these here parts. Soon!

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

      Pancakes. YUM.

  • http://cookeasyvegan.blogspot.com/ Andrea

    Green smoothie = still a no. Haven’t tried overnight oats. But socca? I love socca in all the recipes I’ve tried — I can’t even name a favorite. But the newest one I tried and loved was from Ricki on Diet Dessert and Dogs. She called it quizza because it was kind of a quiche made from chickpea flour.

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       I love the idea of quiche! I’ll check Ricki’s site out!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Cassandra-Greenwald/1166324251 Cassandra Greenwald

    Have you seen this lovely page devoted to socca (http://www.pure2raw.com/socca-tribute/)?  I have been playing around with a few of the recipes, especially the carob socca bread.

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

      No! Thank you for sharing!

  • radioactivegan

    I’ve been holding off on socca, too, but yours looks so good I might change my mind!

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       Thanks! I hope you try it!

  • http://twitter.com/dermiederm Andrea

    Is it wrong of me to be happy that you tried this because I’ve always wanted to but you knooow I’m so picky? lol 

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       LOL!  I think you do some fun and ornery things with a socca recipe, my dear! Try it!

  • Pingback: This week on I Eat Plants: An interview with a chef + Cinco de Mayo (vegan-style) and my Red Radio interview()

  • http://www.kindeating.blogspot.com/ Maggie

    In Uruguay socca is called fainá (basically a chickpea flower + water mixture) and it’s a very traditional dish, usually eaten with pizza :) It’s very common to order “pizza y fainá” to any bar in town :) It’s a very basic recipe, but at home I do a lot of variations.
    This recipe is great :D

    • http://jlgoesvegan.com JL

       Wow, I would love it if bars around here served socca/faina!

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