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Farinata (Socca) with Hummus and Avocado

Here’s a lovely variation on the ubiquitous, overpriced standard avocado toast that appears on every menu everywhere. The bread, called farinata in Italy, is made with chick pea (garbanzo bean) flour. It’s very easy to make, and it’s fantastic. I’ve adapted this recipe from Mark Bittman, one of the best and brightest food mavens out there.

Ingredients

For the Farinata:

  • 1 cup chick pea flour

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp pepper

  • 1 cup lukewarm water

  • 4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil (evoo), divided

  • 1 medium onion

For the Avocado-Hummus Toast

  • hummus
  • 1 avocado (or 1 cup guacamole)
  • ½ tsp fresh lemon juice (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp evoo

Preparation

  1. Place a seasoned 12-inch cast iron pan in the oven and heat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a bowl. Gradually add in the water, whisking it in. Add the first 2 Tbsp of oil and stir.
  3. Set the batter aside.
  4. Slice the onion thinly.
  5. When the oven is done preheating, take out the pan (carefully! It will be very hot!) and add the second 2 Tbsp of oil. Swirl it around, and add the onions in a single layer.
  6. Place the pan back in the oven, and cook the onions for 6-8 minutes, until they’re beginning to brown.
  7. Remove the pan from the oven.
  8. Remove the onions with a slotted spatula or spoon (trying to keep as much of the oil as possible in the pan), and stir them into the batter.
  9. Pour the batter into the pan, and put the pan back into the oven.
  10. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the edges are starting to brown.
  11. In the meantime, chop up the avocado, or shmush it up. You can add the lemon juice, which is delicious with this recipe and which helps prevent the avocado from turning gray and hideous.
  12. Remove the pan from the oven, and brush the last tablespoon of oil over the top of the bread.
  13. Put the pan back in the oven for 3 minutes.  Alternatively, if you want a crisper texture, put the pan under the broiler for a minute or so.
  14. Remove the pan from the oven.
  15. Spread the hummus over the top, and then the avocado.
  16. To serve, cut into wedges.