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Chickpea flour cake

In Gibraltar, where Jews and Muslims continue to live together as they have for many generations, a culinary festival called calentita is organized every year at the beginning of July. “Calentita’’ is the most commonly Arabic translation for the dish chalawen. The calentita became one of the culinary symbols of Gibraltar, to such an extent that special chickpea flour is milled in the United Kingdom and imported to Gibraltar for this occasion. The name calentita (or calentica) comes from the Spanish caliente, meaning “hot.” This festival reminds us of the coexistence of Jewish and Muslim communities, living side by side now as they did in the past. Healthy, dairy-free, flourless and unusual, calentita is a truly original dish for Passover that will give a North African flavor to your menu. 

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Serves 8

Time: 24 hours + 40 minutes 


– 2 cups (250 g) chickpea flour 

– 4 ¼ cups (850ml) water 

– ½ cup (100g) olive oil 

– 1 tsp salt 

– 2 tsp cumin 

– 1 tsp paprika 

– 2 eggs (for a creamier result) 



Mix the chickpea flour, water, olive oil, salt and eggs (if using) together in a bowl and refrigerate for 24 hours. 


Preheat the oven at 428°F (220°C). 


Pour the mixture into a greased square pie pan and bake for 25 minutes. 


Serve hot or lukewarm, cut into thin slices or small squares, and sprinkled with cumin, paprika, and salt.

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