Want to make this delicious and healthy panelle recipe which is one of the most popular foods in Sicily? These crispy bites are made with chickpea flour served with bread or sandwich and drizzled with fresh lemon juice. 

Panelle or Sicilian chickpea fritters are a popular street food that is mostly found in Palermo, Sicily. This fresh, crispy, and hot panelle is served as an appetizer or snack. Panelle is typically born as the food of poor people who have conquered the palate of every social class, from the poorest to noblest. 

This delicious vegetarian appetizer is made from chickpea flour which is stirred into water and boiled. Then pour the dough and spread it into a thin layer on a baking sheet. After several minutes when they are cooled, cut them into squares and fry until they are golden and crispy. It is very easy to prepare at home, and your family will love to have it as a snack or a sandwich filler. 

I decided to prepare it lightly pan-fried and also baked. Both tasted delicious.

You will also love, Vegan Chickpea Salad and Vegan Tuna Salad.

panelle chickpea fritters on a blue plate on a grey background

Want to Save This Recipe?

Enter your email & I'll send it to your inbox. Plus, get great new recipes from me every week!

Save Recipe

By submitting this form, you consent to receive emails from Healthier Steps.

Origin of Panelle

 

Chickpea flour has been popularly used in Italian cuisines since the Roman Empire era. The ancient Romans used to make a combination of chickpea flour and water, which was not really tasty. 

 

Panelle is Silicon fritters which is a popular street food of Palermo. It is often eaten between slices of bread or as a sandwich. In Sicily, the first panelle were made by Arabs who dominated the island between the 9th and the 11th century. 

 

The first panelle was assumed to be cooked in stone in vertical ovens where flatbreads are usually baked in Middle Eastern Cuisines. In the middle age during Angeving’s rule, people in Sicily started to fry panelle, which was loved by Angevins.  

organic chickpeas

What is Chickpea Flour?

 

Chickpea flour has lots of varieties, and the main difference between them is that they are prepared from two different types of chickpea. Kabuli chickpeas are tan-colored ones that are commonly found in grocery stores which are smaller with rougher hulls. Desi chickpeas are found in darker colors: green to brown or black, and it depends on when the seeds are harvested.  

 

The traditional chickpea flour is sometimes referred to as gram flour that is made from the brown version of chickpeas. Chickpea flour is a gluten-free alternative to wheat or all-purpose flour in many dishes, and it is used for thickening sauces, soups, or curries.

Fresh flours are easy to prepare at home as you need a high-speed blender or grain mill to make it instantly in 10 minutes. If you have a high-power blender at home, then make good use of it by grinding some flours.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

Chickpea Flour Health Benefits

 

Chick flour is also known as besan, gram, or garbanzo bean, and it has been used in Indian cooking for many centuries. Chickpeas are versatile legumes, and they have a mild nutty taste, and the chickpea flour is made from Bengal grams. 

 

You can easily make this variant of flour at home, and it gained much popularity worldwide as an alternative gluten-free option to wheat flour. Here are some health benefits of chickpea flour that you should know,

 

  1. Chickpea is filled with many minerals and vitamins, with just one cup of 92 grams of this flour can fill a quarter of your daily nutrition needs.
  2. Antioxidants of chickpeas can help you fight free radicals; chickpea flour in processed foods can decrease their harmful acrylamide contents.
  3. If you are willing to lose weight, this flour is a great option; it has 25% fewer calories than white flour.
  4. Chickpea flour is a low-GI food that gradually affects our blood sugar, resulting in decreased blood sugar.
  5. The fiber content of chickpea flour is high, and it can improve our blood fat levels. It also has a type of fiber called resistant starch, which has its linked health-beneficial capabilities.
  6. In comparison to white flour, chickpea flour has more protein.

How to Make Homemade Chickpea Flour? 

 

To make chickpea flour,

 

  • Take one cup of dried chickpeas, add it to the grain mill, and set it to a fine setting. Start the machine to get perfect ground chickpea flour. 
  • If you are using a high-speed blender, pour the chickpeas in it and start blending at the machine’s maximum speed. Blend the chickpeas until you have finely grounded chickpea flour. 
  • Use a fine-mesh sieve to strain the flour into a bowl and put the large bits in a separate bowl. Process them again to get all pieces finely ground. 
  • You can use them instantly or store them in an airtight container in a dry and cool place.    
cutting panelle with knife

Tips and Tricks to Make Perfect Panelle

 

  • Spread the panelle mixture quickly in the prepared baking sheet before they start to set. 
  • Do not overcrowd the pan while frying the panelle. Cook them in batches and fry 3 to 4 times or until golden texture to get better results. 
  • You can fry them ahead of time on the same day by keeping them warm and fresh in the oven before serving. 
  • It is best to enjoy the panelle the day they are prepared as they tend to lose their crispy texture with time.

Ingredients

 

  • 2 cups chickpea flour
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh parsley
frying chickpea fritters, panelle recipe in a skillet

Instructions

  1. Add 1 1/2 cups water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. In the meantime, sift chickpea flour in a bowl, add salt, cayenne pepper, and the remaining 1 1/2 cups water.
  3. Pour the chickpea flour mixture into the boiling water and stir vigorously using a wire whisk until smooth and creamy.
  4. Reduce heat to simmer for about 10 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat, add parsley, and stir. 
  6. Pour the panelle mixture on the prepared parchment paper and flatten with a spatula to about 1/4 inch thick.
  7. Allow the dough to cool for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour.  
  8. After it is fully cool and dense, cut it into squares. 

To Fry Panelle

  1. Fry panelle fritters in a large skillet heated with oil for 2-3 minutes on each side.

To Bake Panelle

  1. Preheat oven 425 degrees F. Place the baking sheet with the panelle fritters in the oven and cook for 30 minutes, turning halfway or crispy on both sides.
 
  1.  

Other Recipes With Chickpea Flour

  1. Broccoli Fritters
  2. Chickpea Pancakes
  3. Gluten-Free Doubles
  4. Vegan Ackee Quiche
  5. Gluten-Free Vegan Cauliflower Hashbrowns
  6. Cabbage Dumplings With Gravy
  7. Jamaican Callaloo Fritters
chickpea panelle stacked on plate on grey background

If you enjoyed this post about Panelle Recipe and would love to see more, join me on YoutubeInstagramFacebook & Twitter!

Get discounted copies of my cookbook here.

Fortunately, because of the Ads on our website, readers and subscribers of Healthier Steps are sponsoring many underprivileged families.

Categories

Nutrition

(Per serving)
  • Energy: 182 kcal / 761 kJ
  • Fat: 3 g
  • Protein: 9.7 g
  • Carbs: 30 g

Cook Time

  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 40 min
  • Ready in: 55 min
  • For: 8 Servings

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Add 1 1/2 cups water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. In the meantime, sift chickpea flour in a bowl, add salt, cayenne pepper, and the remaining 1 1/2 cups water.
  3. Pour the chickpea flour mixture into the boiling water and stir vigorously using a wire whisk until smooth and creamy.
  4. Reduce heat to simmer for about 10 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat, add parsley, and stir. 
  6. Pour the panelle mixture on the prepared parchment paper and flatten with a spatula to about 1/4 inch thick.
  7. Allow the dough to cool for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour.  
  8. After it is fully cool and dense, cut it into squares. 

To Fry Panelle

  1. Fry panelle fritters in a large skillet heated with oil for 2-3 minutes on each side.

To Bake Panelle

  1. Preheat oven 425 degrees F. Place the baking sheet with the panelle fritters in the oven and cook for 30 minutes, turning halfway or crispy on both sides.
Recipe author's Gravatar image

Michelle Blackwood, RN

Hi, I’m Michelle, I’m the voice, content creator and photographer behind Healthier Steps. I share vegan and gluten-free recipes because of past health issues. My goal is to help you make healthier choices and show you how healthy eating is easy and delicious.