Three Recipes for Panissa

Panissa Ligure (Ligurian Chickpea Polenta)

by Cristiano Bonino

You might enjoy this recipe on our tours in Liguria where it is quite popular, mostly enjoyed during aperitif with a nice glass of local white wine.

Rather than coming from a specific person, this version is the condensed result of many conversations with different housewives, bakers, chefs, and food lovers from all over Liguria.


Ingredients for 4 people:

  • 150 grams (1 cup and 2 Tbsp) chickpea flour
  • 600 grams (2 and 1/2 cups) water
  • 2.5 grams (1/2 tsp) salt
  • EVOO to grease bowl/tray 


  • Mix together the chickpea flour, water, and salt with a whisk
  • Cook in a pot on the stove over medium heat
  • Continually stir with the whisk until the mixture thickens, then keep mixing with a spoon (the same technique as when making polenta/corn meal)
  • After ~30 mins or so (when the mixture starts to get detached from the walls of the pot), pour into a tray or bowl previously greased with EVOO 
  • Allow to cool before placing in the fridge for a few hours covered with plastic film
  • Take out of the fridge and slice into strips (or dice depending on your preferred way to serve it**) for the quantity you plan to serve 
  • Return the remaining uncooked panissa to the fridge for another time

**How to serve Panissa 

  • Fried: slice into ¼-inch strips and stir-fry in a pan for a few minutes with EVOO on both sides
  • Salad: dice and dress with lemon, EVOO, salt, and pepper, adjusted to your taste
  • Sautéed: dice and sautée in a pan over medium heat with EVOO and finely chopped onions. Adjust to your taste with salt and pepper

Buon appetito!


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