My poor, long-suffering other half has had to eat many a food experiment over the years, complying with all of my culinary whims and wishes. The one dish that I have never been able to convince him to eat is frittata or omelette – its a textural thing. So when I found a recipe for vegan frittata while perusing Elly Pear’s latest veggie/vegan cookbook, Green, the reception wasn’t exactly rapturous. I sold it as more a chickpea pancake quiche. I suppose it isn’t far off Socca – the French chickpea flour pancake. He wasn’t convinced.
Elly’s vegan frittata is a basic batter made from chickpea or gram flour, water, spring onions and grated carrots with some spices, thickened in an oven-proof frying pan on the hob before transferring to the oven to finish. I also added half a teaspoon of kala namak too. You may have to get over the fact that the batter looks like vomit.
Kala namak, or black salt, is something that I have recently procured. Kala namak is a sulphurous salt that lends dishes an eggy flavour (and odour) so is good for scrambled tofu and egg-less vegan frittata.
Did it pass the frittata-phobe’s taste test?
Yes. The vegan frittata was a hit which is lucky considering it yields eight portions. The frittata is heavy enough that you can’t overeat it, which is always useful. It’s also got quite a lot of sweet, spicy depth from the nigella seeds and garlic powder. We ate it variously with rocket and some garlic sriracha, drizzled with a tahini-molasses sauce and as part of a vegan spread with refried blackens and a tomato avocado salsa. Versatile, good for cooking in advance and robust enough to travel in Tupperware – I can foresee the vegan frittata is going to be a regular Sunday batch cook. I’m already concocting ways to vary it with different veggies.
The only issue the other half took with the recipe was the same. So going forward, I will call it a chickpea pancake.
This vegan frittata or chickpea pancake recipe can be found on p.154 of Green which is available on amazon, or in bricks and mortar bookshops everywhere.