Thursday, December 20, 2012

Simple Socca with Fava Bean Spread and Sauteed Kale...

I know I haven’t been keeping up with this as well as I should have been, but with the holiday season I’ve been a little pressed for time. School has been brutal the past couple of weeks as I struggled to finish all of my assignments in time to take my final - which I did today, and aced! - And any time I’ve had not devoted to school has been divided between work, holiday planning/Christmas shopping and watching documentaries on Netflix until my one month free-trial runs out on the 24th. Suffice to say I haven’t been doing a lot of cooking, or rather I have been, but I haven’t really been ‘creating. ‘ Mostly I’ve been relying on my good and trusty cook books to see me through, particularly those cook books devoted to healthful recipes that can be made in under 30 minutes. As unlike everyone else - or so it seems - I’m actually trying to keep with my routine this holiday season rather then use the holiday as an excuse to excessively binge on high fat junk foods. So I’ve been eating a lot of salad - which I’ve been craving lately anyway - and a lot of soup because the days are growing colder, a lot of things you probably wouldn’t find to enticing except for maybe the Socca.

Socca you see is my new favorite thing. - That and firtatta but more on that another time! Now Socca is a specialty in Southeastern French cuisine particularly in and around Nice. However it apparently originates in Genoa, Italy, and over time spread to Nice where it became popular throughout the region of the Ligurian Sea.  There are apparently similar dishes in countries such as Algeria, Argentina and Uruguay but I digress. The Socca I’m talking about is of the French variety. For those of you still unsure of what a Socca is, it’s a crispy thin pancake cooked in a cast iron skillet and eaten as a finger food while piping hot. It’s seasoned with fresh herbs, and generous amounts of black pepper and is typically eaten on it’s own. However I’m quite fond of turning my socca into a kind of pizza topped with a bean dip instead of a marinara sauce, and a lightly dressed salad. Making your meal an all in one sure makes cleanup a breeze! Over the past few weeks I’ve made quite a few socca’s, I’m typically making it twice a week now, and so I’ve tried a lot of different things, but this was one of my favorite combinations, and my husbands too. It’s sort of a cross between Provincial and Italian with a little red hot jalapeno thrown in for good measure, but what it really is, is delicious so I hope you try it out.

Simple Socca with Fava Bean Spread and Sauteed Kale


1 ½ C Chickpea Flour
½ tsp Sea Salt
1/4 - ½ tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
3-4 Nice Sprigs Fresh Rosemary minced
1 tsp Dried Basil
1 tsp Dried Oregano
½ tsp Garlic Powder
1 ½ C Water
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/4 C Minced Kalamata Olives
1/4 C Minced Sun-dried Tomatoes
1/4 C Minced Green Onion
Minced Pickled Jalapeno to taste - try between 2-4 Tbsp.

Fava Bean and Sun-dried Tomato Spread

1 15oz Can Fava Beans drained and rinsed
2 Garlic Cloves - or to taste
6 Oil-Packed Sun-Dried Tomatoes
1 tsp Dried Basil
Sea Salt and Black Pepper to Taste
2 Tbsp Olive Oil - optional
1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
2 Tbsp Water to thin as needed


1-2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Large Red Onion sliced thin
1 Large Bunch Kale cut into bite sized pieces.
10 Cherry Tomatoes halved
2 Tbsp Hemp or Sesame Seeds
Sea Salt and Pepper to taste
Ume Vinegar to taste

- Preheat oven to 425'F

- To make Socca whisk flour, salt, pepper, rosemary, basil, oregano, garlic powder, water and olive oil together in a bowl and set aside for 30 minutes.  - While Socca is resting you can make the Fava Spread and the topping.

- After thirty minutes whisk in all remaining ingridients.

- Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat on top of the stove. Spray with a little non-stick cooking spray. Once hot enough that water sizzles pour the Socca batter into the pan. Let the socca cook on high in the pan for 1 minute until the edges turn golden brown.

- Turn off the burner, and remove the cast iron pan, placing it into the heated oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes until light golden brown.

- To make the Fava Bean Spread combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until completely smooth and spreadable. Adding more water or oil to thin as needed. Taste for seasonings and adjust as necessary.

- To make topping. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add onion and saute until translucent about 5-7 minutes.

- Add Kale and saute for another 5-8 minutes until kale is wilted and tender. Add in cherry tomatoes and saute for 2-3 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, ume vinegar and hemp seeds. When the mixture has reached it’s desired tenderness and flavor remove from heat.

- To assemble, cut the socca into four equal pieces and divide amongst 2-4 people. Spread each wedge of socca with a generous amount of the fava spread and top with a generous helping of the sauteed kale mixture.

- Enjoy! Seriously i'm so in love with socca you may see more recipes for it and variations of it from me in the future!

PS: Socca’s seem to be becoming a little more popular in North America. Over the past few weeks I’ve been making them I’ve seen them mentioned a few times in magazines, blog posts, and even in newly released cook books! Also another great fact about Socca is that they’re naturally gluten-free, and vegan! 


  1. I LOVE SOCCAS!!!!!!! I wish we could have them every day. hah! They're just so delicious & perfect for when you're really feeling like a giant load of greens but not in a salad mood. - M