Panisses have gained a lot of popularity since I first started cooking them in restaurants over 15 years ago. Cooking panisses is a lot like the process off making fried polenta. You start by making a thick porridge, cool it off then fry various shapes. Panisses are so yummy to eat, are gluten free and will help you develop great arm muscles if you make them often. Panisses make a wonderful accompaniment to roast chickens, lamb and stews but are best eaten alone. Make a rich dipping sauce like rouille or a spicy harissa flavored aioli to kick it up a notch. But what are Panisses made from?
Panisses are chickpea fries made from garbanzo (chickpea) flour, water and seasonings. They have been popular in the South of France and Italy for centuries experiencing a revival in the 1930’s. Nowadays they are making their second revival in restaurants across the USA.
- 2 cups chickpea flour
- 4 cups water
- one teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
- one teaspoon piment d’ville
- 10 cups peanut oil, for frying
- 2 ounces Parmesan
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- Whisk chickpea flour, water, sea salt, black pepper, cumin, herbes de Provence and piment d’ville together thoroughly.
- Cook on moderate heat in a heavy bottomed pan constantly stirring to prevent lumps. After cooking for four minutes the mixture will start to thicken to the consistency of a pancake batter. Keep stirring away. By six minutes the mixture is thick and spurting like a mini volcano. After ten minutes it will be very thicken and prone to scorch the bottom.
- Continue cooking till mixture is super thick and bubbling like a volcano, about 20 minutes in total.
- Immediately pour onto a pre-oiled cookie sheet. Oil the bottom of another sheet and place on top gently pressing.
- Refrigerate for a few hours or overnight.
- Cut into finger shaped fries and fry at 350 degrees till brown and crispy, about five minutes. Toss in a bowl with Parmesan and parsley and eat right away!