Versilia is one of Tuscany’s ideal summer destinations! Along the coast there’s a another delicious tuscan street food you can delight yourself with, while you’re at the beach or just walking on the promenade or maybe even before cocktails or after having danced the night away in one of the many nightclubs!
The truth is that along the Meditterranean chickpea flour is always found in some form or another – legend has it that in 1284 a ship that was carrying olive oil tanks and sacks full of chickpeas spilled over got got into a terrible storm and the chickpeas got wet with the seawater that got on board. However, they had to consume the little food they had so they ate the resulting mixture after it had dried in the sun…. the story goes on, and results in what we can eat today along the Tuscan coast – Cecina!
It’s a sort of extra thin and crispy pizza, that is traditionally baked in a large (1mt) copper tinned pan. It should be baked in a wood burning oven but you can also make it at home. La cecina is a simple mixture made of water, chickpeaflour and salt. The batter is prepared and poured onto special large baking pan called a ‘teglia’ which measures more than 1 metre in diameter. Cooking time will vary according to your oven, but when you see how it is baked in the traditional manner – you will notice it bakes for a few minutes until it’s crisp and gold in color although it is always soft and creamy on the inside! It is best eaten piping hot with a sprinkling of ground pepper.
You can find Cecina in the Tuscan Riviera but also in Pisa, Livorno, Lucca and Massa Carrara. I however suggest you visit Viareggio where a great exhibit is opening tomorrow by artist Galileo Chini!