Recipe testing can be stressful, expensive and very frustrating but when something comes together (be it the first time or the 50th time) there is no better feeling!
This was one of those rare occasions where it just worked on the first try and has worked perfectly twice since. I think that means I can declare this recipe “foolproof”?
I think I will also declare it my new favourite dinner because it really is so delicious, so easy to make and healthy too!
Taste-wise, this really hits the pizza spot. Texture-wise, it’s very close but isn’t quite a replacement for a wheat or gluten-free flour based pizza.
It’s a much softer dough. Still, it’s in no way less delicious! If you’re on a vegan & grain-free diet, this will definitely cure your pizza cravings :-)
The base of the pizza is a socca or “farinata” flatbread, made from chickpea flour.
As you can probably guess from the name, it originates from Italy and is made very simply by mixing chickpea / garzbonzo bean flour with water and a bit of olive oil, adding to a pan and baking at a high heat.
You can find chickpea flour at the supermarket in the world food aisle or in Asian markets, health food shops or online.
When it comes to socca, a lot of recipes call for a lot of olive oil. I personally like to use just 1 tbsp for flavour and simply brush a non-stick tray with a small amount, so it doesn’t turn out greasy. For cooking, I recommend a light but good quality olive oil.
If you’re ever wondering when to use what kind of olive oil, here is a handy guide on olive oil’s from Jamie’s Italian:
A while ago, I made a very similar pizza recipe using quinoa flour instead of chickpea flour.
It was made with a homemade vegan mozzarella which I imagine would go wonderfully with this pizza too!
However, I find cashew cheese sauce SO easy to make and much more flavourful so that’s why I’ve used it on this pizza.
Incidentally, looking back at the post, where I also discussed how I had just committed to a vegan lifestyle, makes me realise that it has been exactly 2 years! Which is much longer than I thought. So happy veganiversary to me :-)
Let’s celebrate with some pizza…
This socca pizza is:
- Vegetarian & vegan
- Gluten-free & grain-free
- High in plant-based protein
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1 cup water
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp mixed dried italian seasoning (basil, oregano etc.)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- ½ cup tomato passata
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- ½ red onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tbsp dried italian seasoning
- Cashew cheese sauce
- Fresh chopped basil
- Chopped veggies of choice (I used red onion and pepper)
- Preheat the oven to 230C / 450F and brush a 35x20cm / quarter sheet baking tray with one tablespoon of the oil. Alternatively, you can use a large, round pizza tray.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the remaining one tablespoon of oil, chickpea flour, water and seasonings. Whisk until completely smooth.
- Pour the batter onto the baking tray and tilt to make sure the tray is evenly coated. Cook for 10 minutes until golden and slightly crisp. Remove from the oven but keep the oven hot.
- Meanwhile, make the pizza sauce by simply blending the ingredients in a blender until smooth. Spread on top of the socca base.
- Drizzle dollops of the cashew cheese over the sauce and scatter some chopped vegetables on top. Bake again for a further 5-10 minutes. If you prefer you can drizzle the cheese on after the pizza has baked, for a more creamy cheese.
- Cut into 6 slices and enjoy!
What are your favourite pizza toppings?