Panisse with Aioli and Artichoke Salad
Sides, Veggie

Panisse with Aioli and Artichoke Salad

Cooks in 1.5 hours Difficulty Medium

We often say we need a vacation because it’s been a while, and we need a break and some culinary inspiration. Because when we do go on vacation, the first criterion is food. 

Nearly a year ago, in such a food-oriented trip, the chosen foodie destination was Marseille, with a clear outspoken intention of coming back with as many ideas for new dishes as possible. Researching Marseillaise and Provencal food led us to discover Panisse, a chickpea flour cake fried and served with dip or toppings, much like ‘french’ fries. We were keen on further exploring this concept like our beloved polenta fries. Thinking that crisp exterior and the creamy interior is just about the best vessel we could imagine for most things we’d like to put in our mouths. 

It might be funny (or embarrassing) to admit we never actually tried Panisse in Marseille, but the idea stayed in our minds and hearts and had to be put to good use at the opportune moment.

This version stays true to *very* Marseillaise flavors, topped with a more or less traditional Aioli and a no less than excellent artichoke-olive-fennel salad that’s lemony punch is the perfect thing to cut the richness of the garlicky aioli (also helps with the aftermath of garlic breath).

You can cut the Panisse any way you like. Traditionally they come either like sticks or flat rounds. We went with squares because we’re little rebels. We shallow-fried our Panisse, which is fine, but honestly, a deep fry would result in a more all-around crispy exterior.

To make the Panisse, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Basic Panisse:

  • 100 g butter
  • 250 g salted water
  • 100 g chickpea flour: you can get this at Asian or Arab supermarkets
  • 300 g water
  • neutral oil for frying


  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled, deveined
  • ½ tsp smoked salt: optional. Regular salt is fine, but smoked is better 🙂
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika powder
  • a squeeze of lemon juice: of about ½ a lemon
  • 100 g olive oil
  • 100 g neutral oil*

Artichoke fennel salad

  • 4-5 leaves of sage
  • 3 artichoke hearts, cut into 8 wedges
  • ½ fennel, sliced thin
  • handful olives, ideally Nicoise, pitted and halved
  • ½ fresh red chili, sliced
  • 1 lemon, fileted and cut into small bite-sized pieces
  • a handful of parsley, chopped
  • salt
  • Olive oil: Traditional aioli often uses only olive oil, but we found in most cases (in most oils) the flavor to become too bitter and intense, and therefore recommend sub half of the olive oil for neutral oil.

Some tips for making Panisse with Aioli and Artichoke Salad:

Start by making the Panisse as it needs an hour or so to chill and set before it’s ready to be cut and fried.

We had fun making aioli the traditional way with a mortar and pestle, even though ours is too small so we had to switch to a bowl at some point. You may however use a stick blender. Just don’t tell anyone we said that.

The artichoke salad will be your new favorite thing in the world! It’s not only great for Panisse, it’s also great on bread or as a side.

Panisse with Aioli and Artichoke Salad

Panisse with Aioli and Artichoke Salad

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Resting time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course sides, snack
Servings 4


Basic Panisse:

  • 100 g butter
  • 250 g salted water
  • 100 g chickpea flour
  • 300 g water
  • Oil for frying


  • 4 cloves of garlic peeled, deveined
  • ½ tsp smoked salt optional, normal is fine
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika powder
  • squeeze of lemon juice about ½ a lemon
  • 100 g olive oil
  • 100 g neutral oil

Artichoke fennel salad:

  • 4-5 leaves of sage
  • 3 artichoke hearts cut into 8 wedges
  • ½ fennel sliced thin
  • handful olives ideally Nicoise, pitted and halved
  • ½ fresh red chili sliced
  • 1 lemon fileted and cut into small bite sized pieces
  • handful parsley chopped
  • salt
  • olive oil



  • Bring 250 g of salted water and 100 g of butter to a boil. Separately whisk chickpea flour with 300 g of water until smooth.
  • Once the butter-water-gunk has boiled, whisk in the chickpea paste. Now it’s time to start whisking. Continue whisking while cooking on medium-low heat for about 5 minutes until the mixture boils and becomes very thick.
  • Transfer into a lightly oiled (olive oil) pan and spread evenly. Cover the surface directly with clingfilm and place in the fridge to set.
  • Once ready to use, flip out the Panisse onto a chopping board, and cut it into squares or other desired shapes and sizes.


  • Add garlic, salt, paprika powder, and lemon to a mortar and smash the garlic until a very fine, almost creamy puree is reached. Start streaming in oils and constantly swirl to combine.
  • Transfer into a bowl and stream in the remaining oil while constantly whisking. You might need to add a splash of water if the mixture seems to start splitting. You can continue adding more oil depending on how thick you want the aioli. The more oil, the thicker it’ll be. Adjust to taste with more salt and/or lemon juice.

Artichoke salad:

  • Heat sage and olive oil in a pan. Once the sage starts crisping up, add the artichokes and a bit of salt, stir and cook for 3 minutes until they get a bit of color. Add half of the sliced fennel, then the olive and chili.
  • Saute for 2-3 minutes longer and transfer into a bowl. Season the rest of the sliced fennel (raw one) with a bit of lemon juice and salt, mix with the artichokes, add in the lemon and parsley.

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