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“Panelle” Sicilian Chickpea Flour Fritters are light, fried crisp fritters, typical Sicilian street food often served with a little salt and a squeeze of lemon.
Panelle are perfect as a gluten free snack and you can serve these either on their own or as an addition to a chicken or meat dish as they are perfect with a great Italian sauce. The idea is to get the fritters quite thin when spreading the mixture so that when they are fried they tend to blister. They are best eaten hot although also delicious at room temperature.
Makes about 20 fritters.
Pour the water into a heavy based saucepan and whisk in the chickpea flour until well combined and smooth.
Turn on the heat to a low temperate and stir in the parsley and of salt. After about 3 minutes and stirring continually with a wooden spoon you will find that the mixture starts to thicken, you will need to use your muscles, as it is important that the mix is continually stirred. Keep stirring for another 8 minutes until the mixture starts to breathe. By breathing I mean like molten lava or thick bubbles, as soon as it starts to breathe like this, take it off the heat.
Taste to adjust the seasoning and pour the mixture onto either a cleaned slightly oiled workbench – marble, stone or laminate bench tops are perfect. Work quickly and using a spatula is best to really smooth out the mixture to about 2-3 mm. Allow the panelle to cool at room temperature and then slice into 6cm – 8cm squares.
Heat a heavy frypan on an over moderate temperature and test the oil by dropping in a bit of the panelle to see if the oil sizzles and the panelle turns golden. The panelle needs to almost be covered with the hot oil. In batches fry the panelle for up to a minute on each side until golden and crispy.
To clean your pot, as the panelle does tend to stick, fill the pot with hot water and leave it to soak for about 5 – 10 minutes.
Serve the panelle hot with a sprinkle of extra salt or a squeeze of lemon.