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Post Christmas food frenzy: socca bread December 26, 2013

Posted by mareserinitatis in food/cooking.
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I realize I haven’t been posting much the past couple months.  While I’ve been busy teaching and with work, the real reason is far more sinister: I’ve been cooking.  Constantly.

Since my episode last fall, one problem I’ve continued to have is tingling in my feet…what doctors call parasthesia.  While they didn’t find any nerve fiber damage, I have found out that this could either be a result of my bad reaction to the medication that set things off…or it can also be a response to gluten.  People with celiac disease, it turns out, have a higher than average chance at having neurological issues, and even trace amounts of gluten will cause the problem.

In that vein, we have cut out the vast majority of processed foods in our diet, most of which were ‘gluten-free’ this and ‘gluten-free’ that.  The result of that, however, is that I cook a lot more than I ever used to…and I used to cook a lot to begin with.

So…because I have been so busy cooking, I figured I would share some of my favorite recipes so far over the next couple days.  If nothing else, it will make them easier for me to find later on.

The first one is for socca bread, which is apparently a French-based flatbread.  I have been looking for a substitute for pita bread as one of our favorite regular meals is gyros.  I discovered that while there were a lot of various bread alternatives, pita wasn’t on anyone’s radar.  After finally giving up, I came across this post on The Patient Celiac (which is an awesome blog for all things celiac, BTW).  It included a recipe for socca bread, which sounded like a good pita substitute.  I tried it, and like most gluten-free bread options, it crumbled as soon as you folded it.  That’s fine if all you’re doing is smearing hummus on it, but not so much if you’re trying to put meat, lettuce and tsatziki in there…

I wasn’t giving up, though.  As I have become more versed in gluten-free baking, the solution soon became obvious: tapioca flour.  I changed the recipe by substituting tapioca flour for 1/6th of the chickpea flour.  Voila! Foldy flatbread, perfect for making gyros.  So here’s my version, which is most definitely not traditional and makes a bigger batch than the linked version (the excess freezes well):

3 cups water

2 1/2 cups chickpea flour (or garbanzo flour)

1/2 cup tapioca flour

4 1/2 tbsp olive oil + more for cooking

1 1/2 tsp salt.

All of the above ingredients are mixed well and left to sit.  (Ideally, you’d want to let it sit for about 24 hours to maximize fermentation and hence nutritional value, but it depends on how far ahead you’re thinking.)  You can also add spices, as the linked version suggests.  I particularly like rosemary, myself.

To cook, I put approximately 1 tsp of olive oil in a heated six inch frying pan.  I add around 1/3-1/2 cup of batter and let it fill the bottom of the pan, flipping once the top is mostly dry.  I’m using a sort of crepe-cooking method, although the linked version has a couple different ways to make this, like broiling.  My bread is also smaller than the linked version.

And that’s it!  So…I now have a substitute for pita bread, and as long as the garbanzo flour is processed in a gluten-free facility, I shouldn’t even have to worry about trace gluten in the bread.

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Comments»

1. nicoleandmaggie - December 26, 2013

I have a post coming up on arepas. We got an arepa maker for Christmas. 🙂

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mareserinitatis - December 27, 2013

I’d never heard of them before! When I’m feeling dangerous, I might have to give these a try, too. 🙂

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2. Rachel - May 2, 2014

I was curious if anyone else had come up with this idea. I kind of did a reverse conclusion as I added chickpea flour to a recipe calling for just tapioca flour at first, but today I made socca with tapioca flour at about the ratios your recipe calls for. We all love how chewy it is. Makes a great pizza crust, too. Will be making more of this in the future!!

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mareserinitatis - May 2, 2014

I hadn’t considered using it for pizza crust. I’ll have to give that a try! Thanks for the idea.

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