Chickpea Fries

Chickpea Fries


Also known as panisse or panelle these delicious chickpea fries are completely addictive.
  • Serves: 4 to 6
  • Active Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 40 mins
  • Views: 23,851
  • Success: 70%


Step 1: Preparing the Chickpea Fries

• 3 1/2 cups cold water
• 1 1/4 cups chickpea flour
• 1/2 cup cornmeal
• 1 clove garlic
• 1 tbsp sea salt*
• 2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley
• 1 tsp fresh rosemary
• zest of 1 lemon


Line a 13″ × 9″ -inch baking tray with non-stick aluminium foil (or use a good non-stick tray) and set aside. Note: If you use a tray that is the same height as you want the fries to be, it makes it very easy to spread the mixture out later.

Next, finely grate the garlic and zest the lemon. A microplane works well for both of these ingredients. Next, finely chop the parsley and rosemary and set aside for later.

In a large pot over high heat, combine the chickpea flour, cornmeal, water, garlic and salt. Whisk gently to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

*Note: This may seem like a fair amount of salt, but once the mixture has been chilled, the saltiness mellows out a lot.

Once the mixture begins to thicken and bubble, reduce the heat to medium and switch to a rubber spatula. Stir constantly and scrape the bottom of the pot to prevent scorching. Next, add the parsley, rosemary and lemon zest and continue to cook for about 6 to 8 minutes.

Once done, pour the batter onto the prepared baking tray and quickly spread the mixture out evenly. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 4 hours or until completely chilled and set. This can be done a day in advance.

Step 2: Frying and Serving the Chickpea Fries

• olive oil for frying
• Romesco Sauce (optional)
• lemon wedges for serving (optional)


To prepare the fries, first gently flip the tray over onto a cutting board. Cut the mixture lengthwise into equal sections and then cut across into pieces approximately 3" -inches long.

Next, slowly heat approximately 1/2" -inch of olive oil in a large non-stick fry pan over medium heat. Once the oil reaches about 375˚F you are ready to start frying. If the oil is not hot enough, the fries will soak up too much oil and potentially start to fall apart, so make sure the oil is at the proper temperature. If you like, you can also gently toss the fries in a bit of cornmeal just before frying for a bit of extra texture and crunch.

Fry the chickpea fries until they are golden brown on all sides, about 2 minutes each side. Once done, remove them from the oil and set onto a cooling rack lined with paper towel. Sprinkle a nice finishing salt and enjoy. These fries go particularly well with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a side of Romesco Sauce for dipping.


  • Jose S
    Jose S
    Just made the chickpea batter around 8pm so I will fry them tomorrow. however the flavor is wonderful (I tasted it before pouring). My question is how thick should it be prior to pouring? Should it be very stiff, or in between where it is a tiny bit runny? I also made the romesco sauce this has to be the best sauce I have tasted and made in my culinary career the flavor profile is outstanding. The market was out of sherry vinegar (could I have used sherry cooking wine, the one the sell at the market?), so I use red wine vinegar I had in the cupboard. This is my go to sauce from now on, rich in flavor.
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    The consistency should be a tiny bit runny when it is hot. Once it sets it will stiffen up. As long as they stay together while they fry you are good to go. As for the romesco sauce - Yeah!!! so glad to hear that you liked it. Next time you will have to try making it with sherry vinegar as it is really lovely. As for substitutions for sherry vinegar, someone else just asked that same question today, so I will just cut and paste that answer here for you. "If you have not tried sherry vinegar, I do suggest that you try to find it as it is delicious! It has a beautiful deep, rich, slightly sweet, nutty, complex flavor profile that is great in many dishes. If you cannot find it, then you could use sherry or even a bit of port or marsala with a touch of vinegar. Another substitution would be to use balsamic or red wine vinegar. You may or may not need to add a touch of sugar to offset the acidity. Here is a great site for substitutions in general. You may also find this article about sherry vinegar helpful. At least it may persuade you to search it out :-)" Hope this helps. Cheers!
  • Rebecca B
    Rebecca B
    The recipe states that the oil in the pan should reach 375 degrees F before commencing shallow frying. I think this is right at the smoke point for extra virgin olive oil. Since it is somewhat challenging to control the temperature in a shallow pan over an open flame, should I be using light olive oil versus the extra virgin? Holding the temperature: Can the temperature of these panelles be held in the oven after cooking, while I am preparing another dish? If so, for how long? I was also curious about making the decision to shallow fry versus deep fry this dish. I find deep frying much faster. Is there a difference in consistency/texture or flavor profile when shallow frying. Thank you
  • Kimberley S Rouxbe Staff
    Kimberley S
    Hi Rebecca, It's your lucky day! :-) We have a full lesson in the Cooking School on How to Shallow Fry and Deep Fry. This recipe for chickpea fries is one of the practice recipes from that lesson. I believe all of the questions you ask are addressed within the lesson. Check the smoke point on your olive oil. Some olive oils are refined so they are okay to fry with. Typically, extra-virgin is not used to fry but if the temperature is brought up very very slowly, it can be done. Cheers!
  • Rebecca B
    Rebecca B
    I did complete this video segment some time ago. I find them quite helpful, but I usually have addition questions. Last week, I made pan fried oysters using the concepts from this video. They were fantastic. I find that to truly learn certain styles of cooking, I have to do some practice, step back for awhile, and then practice again. That is what I am attempting to do with this recipe. I had some serious difficulties implementing this recipes, though. I think it is far more challenging than many other pan frying recipes I have tried. The day that I wrote my questions, I was planning to bring this dish to a potluck with friends that are gluten-free. I thought this recipe would be good for a gluten-free crowd. After a sample attempt at pan frying the chickpea fries, I abandoned the recipe (short on time and realizing that I did not have a plan for maintaining the temperature of this dish in a larger quantity) and made something else. Problems I was having: 1.) Difficult time with regulating the temperature in the pan. I was trying to keep it just under the smoke-point with my extra-virgin olive oil (about 355-360 degrees) 2.) Realizing that this was probably too time consuming of a cooking method to complete a double batch unless I could hold the temperature while finishing subsequent batches -- it was a potluck that required a short trip (maybe 5 minutes) from kitchen to table. I was loading the pan with only 8 fries at a time to prevent a precipitous temperature drop. 3.) Salt level. I must be somewhat salt sensitive, because I found this recipe too salty for my taste. 4.) The fries were very delicate (perhaps too warm?) and several fell apart while cooking. I would like to make this dish again for entertaining. I think it has great potential for those who are gluten-free. I was wondering how I might be able to make a double batch and hold the temperature to get through the technicalities of larger batch pan frying. My immediate questions about implementing this particular recipe: 1.) Do you have a recommended thermometer style for pan frying? I just have a manual style candy thermometer -- and it is just about impossible to get an accurate reading while cooking. (It requires tipping an empty pan so that the oil pools on one side -- as well as about 30 seconds for the mercury to register). A lot can happen in 30 seconds. 2.) Is it possible to keep these cooked fries in a warming oven while I am cooking subsequent batches? If so, for how long? 3.) If I had a choice of using cast iron (staub-wear), versus stainless for this recipe --which would be better? I tried stainless first (my usual choice) & the oil temperature seemed to drop too quickly when placing these in the pan. The staub-wear seemed to do a better job holding the temperature, but at the risk of smoking the oil quicker. 4.) How long should I remove this dish from the fridge before cooking? I removed the pans from the refrigerator and cut them into fry shapes about 1/2 hour before attempting to cook. As you can tell, I was still having problems with regulation of the heat. The exteriors felt about room temperature, so I am wondering if this is the temperature of the fries, or the mass of the fries, that are contributing to my troubles. 5.) Is it reasonable to consider setting up 2 frying pans side by side and cooking 2 batches at the same time -- or is this really doing too much multi-tasking to truly be successful. Thank you
  • Kimberley S Rouxbe Staff
    Kimberley S
    First of all, when cooking for large crowds, it is helpful to use the largest pan possible. You can definitely set up 2 frying pans. This is what cooks in restaurants need to do all the time to get food out in a timely manner. It will just take practice to hone your multi-tasking skills. RE: the salt level. This can easily be adjusted to your liking. Taste the mixture as you mix it. Generally, these fries are intended to be like a canape (not where one eats a whole plate full, so they could seem a bit salty in that case). Canapes are usually highly-seasoned nibblies that you can enjoy with a pre-dinner drink. RE: Falling apart. Double check your ratios/measurements and chill the mixture well. They are delicate in nature, so you'll need to be gentle for sure. RE: Pan Temp. It is not recommended to use a thermometer when shallow-frying. There are other tell-tale signs to look for to understand and gauge how hot the oil is as shown in the lesson on How to Shallow Fry. Once the oil is hot, it is also important not to overcrowd the pan. Add the items slowly to avoid a massive temperature drop. And as you remove some, you can replace them with cold ones to adjust the temperature so the oil doesn't overheat. Cold items fry better, so try cutting and frying without letting them come to room temperature next time. The warmer they are, the harder they will be to work with. Cast iron definitely holds heat better, but this is also where you need to become familiar with your pans and your heat source. You'll need to monitor the level of heat. It's just something that will take practice to get used to and perfect. We haven't kept the fries warm in the oven before but you could give it a try. It would be best to place the fries onto a rack (set over a tray). This way, the air will circulate and the fries won't turn soggy quickly. As for the amount of time, you'll have to test it. The longer they sit, they tend to get a bit wrinkly. Hope this helps. Cheers!
  • Rebecca B
    Rebecca B
    I will make sure not to leave the fries out to attain room temperature. Perhaps that was my greatest error. The deep fry video recommends frying when the food is at room temperature. I thought that the same would apply with this recipe -- and perhaps more so -- because shallow frying varies even more. This will be more challenging for me in terms of the timing schedule, because it will necessitate even fewer items in the pan. I will practice this recipe hopefully several times this week (fortunately the ingredients are inexpensive) to see if I can get proficient enough to run two pans at the same time. The tray on the rack is a great idea. I've seen this technique used before -- like in the fried chicken video, but was not really sure why this was critical . Now I know. I was at Sur la table yesterday, and a salesperson recommended an infrared thermometer, because apparently they can accurately gauge surface temperature without needing to be in the pot. I cringed at the price (around $100 for this thermometer). Online reviews seemed to also suggest that they can also give inaccurate readings due to the frequent need to recalculate. So, it seems like you are right. As much as I would like to be more precise (one thing I like about deep frying is that precision is relatively easy, I have to accept that my ear needs to be trained to gauge the proper temperature in the pan.
  • Kimberley S Rouxbe Staff
    Kimberley S
    Yes, infrared thermometer's are expensive. It is really best to learn certain cooking techniques by using your senses. Your ears and eyes are your best tools that you can learn to trust. Just to clarify, when it comes to frying, foods do not have to be at room temperature (think deep fried ice cream... it needs to be as cold as possible)! French fries are best cooked twice (the second time around it is best if they are cold). Battered foods (i.e. fish) are usually cold as well. I'm not sure where you are referencing this from in the Shallow/Deep Frying lesson. The main thing is to have the oil at the proper temperature whether you are deep or shallow frying. Have fun practicing your multi-tasking skills. Cooks in restaurants do this ALL day :-) Cheers!
  • Marilyn
    Is it Romesco or Romeso?
  • Dawn T Rouxbe Staff
    Dawn T
    It is romesco (with the "c"). Here is the recipe for the Reply

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