Saturday, January 25, 2014

Falafel



Last week, I posted a foodie picture of the dinner I was preparing: Falafel. A couple of my friends asked about the recipe, so I am sharing it below. Falafel is something I would never have considered making when I was a newlywed--it was too foreign a food, too 'weird' for me. However, in God's kind grace, I discovered the joy of chickpeas, and then a friend shared this recipe on her blog, and I worked up the courage to try it...and here we are, several years later, and we love falafel so much that my recipe page is practically illegible.

[Does anyone remember the Dinner and the Movie show that used to come on TBS on Friday nights? Paul and Annabelle would introduce a movie and then cook a food that went along with the movie during the commercial breaks. {confession: I remembered Annabelle but had to search for Paul's name. I'm sorry, Paul.} It was fun, cheap entertainment. I don't remember any of the meals except for when they aired Ferris Bueller. The accompanying meal was "I Can't Go To School, I Falafel." It made me laugh, but I wasn't interested in falafel. Now I am, and I think of that show every time I make it. But I digress.]

Falafel
  • 1 15 oz can of chickpeas, rinsed (or 1.5 cups of chickpeas)
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley (or 3 TBS dried)
  • 2+ cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • dash pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp lemon juice*
  • 1 tsp baking power
  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1-3 TBS water, as needed, to make dough sticky
Mash chickpeas or put in the food processor. If using food processor, be careful how long you run it, because you do not want it to be too pasty. A couple of short bursts to 'smash' the chickpeas will work. Add onion and parsley. Combine garlic, egg, spices, lemon juice, baking powder and olive oil with chickpeas. Stir in bread crumbs until the mixture holds. You may want to add water to make it a good 'sticky' dough that can be shaped into patties. You may also refrigerate the batter to allow flavors to combine well. 

Make the dough into patties. Fry them in oil (I use a deep cast iron skillet) or bake them in a 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes, turning once.

To serve: Cut pita bread in half, open pocket and stuff with falafel, shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, and cucumber sauce. I make the cucumber sauce about once every three times I make falafel, so it is fine without it. My kids prefer ranch dressing with their falafel :-)

Cucumber sauce: 
16 oz sour cream or plain yogurt
1/2 cucumber, chopped fine
1 tsp dill
salt & pepper
1 TSP mayo
Combine together and refrigerate until ready to serve.

*the last time I fixed falafel I did not have lemon juice, so I substituted apple cider vinegar with no adverse effects to the end product.


Thanks, Laura M., for introducing me to this wonderful recipe many years ago!

1 comment:

Erin said...

We watched Dinner and a Movie quite frequently, and I even have one of the cookbooks from it (somewhere), but I could not have told you their names for anything, which is rather embarrassing. Might have to try this, thanks!