In a nutshell: Our Tuscan stoneground farina di ceci (chickpea flour) is a gluten-free alternative to flour, widely used in Italy to make classic street food snacks like farinata, cecina or panelle.
After harvesting the chickpeas, our stoneground chickpea flour (farina di ceci) is coarsely ground at the farm's mill. It is unsieved to maintain all its dietary fibre, nutritional and organoleptic properties.
Gluten-free, chickpea flour is the famous ingredient in some famous Italian Cucina Povera dishes - Tuscan cecina (chickpea foccacia), Ligurian farinata and Sicilian panelle , all classic street food snacks beloved in their regions. It's also made into socca or panisse, the French equivalent, in Nice and its surrounds. To make them, you simply whisk chickpea flour, water and extra-virgin olive oil together, often with rosemary and little seasoning and leave the batter for several hours before baking in a very hot oven in special copper pans. You can use a paella dish or round roasting tin as an alternative.
How to use:
- Make classic Italian farinata, cecina or panelle.
- Use in an alternative tempura batter or for flouring vegetables before frying.
- Substitute for flour when making biscuits.
- Around the Mediterranean, especially in Italy and Greece, they make polpette or revithokeftedes (small oval chickpea and herb fritters).
About Il Cilegio
Close to the famous Medieval walled town of Monteriggioni in Tuscany, with its imposing turrets and walls, lies the Azienda Agricola Il Cilegio. Owned by the Pattaro family, who have been farming 140 hectares of land since 1952. Today, almost half their land is given over to olive groves and vineyards where they produce excellent Chianti and olive oil. The rest of their fields are cultivated with wonderful beans and pulses, local grains and wheats, all stoneground in their mill and sold to appreciative bakers and chefs in nearby Siena and its surrounds. A farmhouse restaurant is always busy in the summer months with locals who come to eat the classic, rustic Tuscan dishes made with the farm’s produce and is well worth a visit if you’re ever in the area.