French Fridays with Dorie: Socca from Vieux Nice

Socca from Vieux Nice

Socca!

That’s such a fun word to say out loud.  Did you know that soca (with one c) is also the name of a music genre from the Anglo/French Caribbean?  It’s not the “Dieter”/dieter conondrum from tartine week, but another fun coincidence.

Unlike most of my fellow Doristas, I had seen socca before under its Argentinean moniker, faína.  Almost exactly six years ago, Eduardo and I were honeymooning in Argentina.  After four straight days of wonderful multi-course meals in Mendoza, one of the main wine growing areas, we arrived into Buenos Aires looking for something… simple.  Our first meal in the city was pizza and a cold Quilmes at a very good chain restaurant a couple of blocks from our Palermo Soho hotel.  All through the pizzeria there were signs with the different menu items and family style combinations. Most of these included the faína.  Admittedly, we were not curious enough to try it but made sure to ask about it later.  Chickpea flatbread… interesting concept.

I had bought a bag of Bob’s Red Mill garbanzo flour (proud sponsor of IFBC!) a while back to make my friend Madelyn’s falafel recipe.  After using it for the falafel, I vacuum-sealed the bag and nestled it on the door of my fridge, in the company of the buckwheat flour and the farina… not exactly a no-man’s land of refrigerator space, but also not an area I visit often.  Out of the more recent FFwD recipes, the socca caught my eye because I had everything on hand, it was quick, without major cleanup, and fitting with the VB6 lifestyle I’ve adopted for the last two months.  It also seemed to be well liked among most members of the group.  Besides, with only four ingredients – garbanzo flour, olive oil, water and rosemary – it seemed like the perfect snack to put together on a whim.

 Socca batter

After checking out David Lebovitz’s blog post about socca, I chose a shallow cast iron skillet to cook it.  Those pans get screaming hot in the 500˚F oven!  This recipe is the perfect excuse to cure those cast iron pans. One of my favorite tricks to avoid burns – and cautionary blog posts – is to place an oven mitt right over the handle of any pans that go into the oven.

Smoking Hot Cast Iron Skillet for Baking Socca

The batter baked up for about five minutes before turning the broiler on.  I sat by the oven for close to eight minutes to make sure that the flatbread was browned and crisp around the edges.

Socca from Vieux Carre

I also had to see what the socca looked like on the other side before tearing into it.

Socca (Flipped Over)

And after that, as it usually happens with most snacks, it disappeared quickly.  I think I ate a third of it within an hour.  I know this recipe will make it into the picadera roster next time we have company over.  It was one of the little great discoveries from FFwD!

French Fridays with Dorie is an online cooking group where we work our way through Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table.  This week was a makeup week and free recipe choice for the different home cooks.  To see the rest of the group’s soccas, head here.  To see which recipes were selected for this special Friday, click here.

Socca from Vieux Nice

These nifty pictures with the captions first appeared on GreatFood360’s Instagram page on Sunday.
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Author:Adriana

Adriana is a financial analyst by day, avid home cook in the evenings, and food blogger and runner in the strange hours between those two. When not in the kitchen concocting meals and stories to pass around, she is out looking for the next great bite (or the ingredients to make it at home), checking what's new at the market, or planning a trip around great food and wine.

17 Responses to “French Fridays with Dorie: Socca from Vieux Nice”

  1. August 16, 2013 at 9:28 pm #

    I absolutely LOVED the socca – made it again a few times since the original week. Nicely done 🙂

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 2:08 pm #

      I know I will be making it again. Thanks Mardi!

  2. August 16, 2013 at 9:51 pm #

    I loved the socca. I didn’t realize Bob’s Red Mill was an IFBC sponsor. I love his products. So many different cool flours to try. I’ll check out your friend’s falafel recipe. I still have a lot of chickpea flour leftover.

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 2:09 pm #

      They are! I agree with you – they have so many cool products out there. I can’t wait to see what they bring to IFBC 2013.

  3. August 17, 2013 at 7:00 am #

    Lucky you – Argentina is one of the places I am longing to visit! Your socca sounds terrific.

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 3:20 pm #

      Thanks Beth!

  4. August 17, 2013 at 10:01 am #

    I’ve never really been a fan of socca but this was fun to make!

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 2:10 pm #

      It was a lot of fun. I love how little actual hands on time there is for this recipe.

  5. August 17, 2013 at 12:47 pm #

    The socca looks so pretty, love the golden color. Great tip on covering the pan handle to avoid burns. Argentina is on my list of travel places – I find it so interesting how many countries have the same food threads.

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 2:15 pm #

      There were several waves of emigration from Italy to Argentina in the late 19th century… and socca is very popular all through the Mediterranean! And the trick actually came out of necessity. If I don’t see the potholder, I’m going to forget it’s blistering hot and grab it! I almost got burned once.

  6. August 17, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

    I have got to make this – glad Nana got that econo sized delivery of the chickpea flour 🙂 Yours looks just amazing and I am quite certain I would have plowed through more than a third in that hour……

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 3:18 pm #

      A third was a VERY conservative estimate… but I’m certain there was more than a half left by the time E laid eyes on it. 🙂

  7. August 17, 2013 at 2:58 pm #

    alright, I’m going to have to make this soon for sure! 🙂

    yours looks great! I love that you look up the entomology of each word… LOL

    • Adriana
      August 17, 2013 at 3:20 pm #

      Proud word nerd till the end!

  8. August 18, 2013 at 5:41 pm #

    Adriana, thank you for that recipe for falafel, it really looks interesting. I am definitely going to
    try it. Your socca turned out very well and looks delicious.

  9. August 20, 2013 at 9:25 pm #

    The hot pan makes all the difference, doesn’t it?
    Excited to meet you in a few weeks 🙂

  10. September 20, 2013 at 11:13 am #

    Thanks for the shout-out!!!! I never saw soca in Argentina… but I did have fainá, which is something very similar served in Argentinian pizzerias. We actually had pizzas made on fainá to make a gluten-free version.

    your recipe makes me want to go to the south of France to have the real thing!!!! Merci!!!

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