Sicilian Panelle

(serves 4 | 2 hours | easy)

Panelle, deep fried chickpea flour fritters, are one of Sicily’s most famous street foods, most commonly eaten between two slices of bread. Strolling through Palermo you can find them in all friggitorie – small food trucks and shops which specialize in making fried delicacies. 

500g chickpea flour – 600ml cold water – salt – 1 handful of parsley, finely chopped

  1. Place the flour in a bowl and pour in the cold water, whisk well to make sure there are no lumps, then add a pinch of salt. 
  2. Pour the mix into a pan and heat over a medium flame, stirring constantly, until it thickens. 
  3. Once it reaches the consistency of a soft potato pure, remove from the heat. Mix in the chopped parsley and combine. 
  4. Line a rectangular baking dish with parchment paper and transfer the chickpea mix into it, then spread it out evenly with a spatula. Top with a second sheet of parchment paper and roll over it with a rolling pin, until the whole mix is of the same thickness. Let it cool down completely.
  5. Once it has cooled down, cut it into squares. If the squares are thicker than 1cm, slice them into half, horizontally. Heat two fingers of vegetable/seed frying oil in a pan and fry each panella for a few minutes on each side, until golden. 
  6. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on parchment paper to remove the excess oil, then sprinkle with salt and serve hot!