Crisp and salt-flecked on the outside, custardy on the inside, these French Fry-like panisse hit all the notes. They can be cut into any shape that suits your fancy, though I prefer to shape them into fingers if you’re going to dip. These Panisse are GF and vegan so everyone can dig in. Yield: About 60 pieces
- 3 cups cool water
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil plus additional to fry
- 2 cups chickpea flour
- Flaked sea salt
1. Whisk together water, salt, cumin, ¼ cup olive oil and chickpea flour in a large saucepan until smooth. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat, whisking constantly until the batter is very smooth.
2. Switch out the whisk to a wooden spoon, reduce heat to a simmer, and continue to stir constantly until the mixture thickens, lower the heat and continue to cook for 3 to 4 minutes until the batter is consistent in texture and pulls away from the side of the pan.
3. Turn out into a 9x13x2 inch Pyrex dish or 12 x9 inch sheet pan and quickly press to ½ inch thickness with the back of the wooden spoon or damp hands. The batter will set up quickly so move fast. Cool to room temp and the place in the refrigerator unwrapped for a minimum of 1 hour. After the Panisse is thoroughly chilled it can be wrapped well and refrigerated for up to 3 days before cutting and finishing.
4. Cut into ½ inch x 3 inch “fingers”, about the size of a thick French fry. Heat a 10-inch cast iron or non-stick skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil to cover the bottom ½ inch deep and then the Panisse.
5. Cook until golden on 1 side and then turn over and cook until golden on the reverse. Drain on a rack or paper towels. Sprinkle with sea salt. Serve warm with tapenade or the dip of your choice. They are also delicious served plain on their own.