The Sicilian panelle are nothing more than pancakes of chickpea flour, served inside the typical Sicilian bread, whose crust is covered with sesame seeds. Often, they are accompanied by potato croquettes, or any other fried specialty.
Sicilian Panelle: an old tale
The origin of the panelle dates back to a period between the 9th and 11th centuries. At that time, Sicily was dominated by Arabs who, fantastic cooks and excellent cooking experts, began experimenting with new recipes. In particular, by grinding the chickpeas seeds, they obtained a flour that, mixed with water and then cooked, was transformed into a raw dough. Thus, from a small and thin pastry made from the same, was born in Palermo the famous panella, which everyone could taste and with which the people could feed.
As a result, together with the panella, the figure of“panellaro”, one of the most famous of the Palermo culture, arose. In the corners of the streets, with a cart with a stove inside and a casserole full of oil for frying, the panellaro sold his panelle still hot.
Today the panelle are the typical snack of Palermo, but, above all, they are the typical dish of the day of Saint Lucia, during which they are made filled with yellow cream and with powdered sugar.
Ingredients (for 50/60 panelle)
- 500 g of chickpea flour
- 1½ l of water
- Parsley (as needed)
- Salt (as necessary)
- Seeds oil (as necessary)
Mix the chickpea flour little by little in a pan where the water was previously poured. Salt and mix well with a whisk to avoid the lumps. Put everything on the fire and cook over medium-high heat, stirring continuously until the mixture starts to puff.
Turn off the heat and add the parsley. Spread the mixture quickly with a spatula until hot. Let the preparetion rest for at least two hours, then cut the panelle and fry in hot oil.
N.B. to bake ½ kg of chickpea flour the oven tray and 2 large trays are enough.