Falafel is a middle eastern fritter made primarily from chickpeas and herbs. It is commonly featured as a sandwich in pita bread spread inside with hummus and paired with a cucumber salad.
Alternatively, it works well as a plate with some rice, hummus dip with strips of pita bread, and a fresh salad with Kalamata olives.
- Dry Chickpeas
- Fresh Parsley
- Fresh Cilantro
- Garlic Cloves
- Red Onion
For the falafel mix: soak dried chickpeas overnight in water. Then in a food processor, add the drained chickpeas, roughly diced onion, pressed garlic, lemon, and chopped herbs. Process until the texture is like coarse sand or playdough. If it becomes a paste, you’ve gone too far.
Scrape down the sides of the food processor several times in between processing. Stop before it gets to a paste and it should still be only lightly moist.
Then, cover and refrigerate the mixture for several hours to a few days. Or, form balls/disks now and freeze them on a baking sheet. After frozen, place them into a freezer bag and store for several months.
To pan fry the falafel: form small disks in the palm of your hand (if you haven’t already) and place on a baking sheet or cutting board. For consistency, use a small disher to portion before forming.
Also, prepare another baking sheet with inset drying rack to place the fried falafel to drain. Then, deep fry or pan fry. If panfrying in a sautepan, use about 1 inch of oil and fry on medium-high heat for 4 minutes on each side, flipping once.
Try to keep the oil at 350 degrees to quickly fry the outside. This seals the falafel and causes the inside to steam, cooking it to a more fluffy texture. When you add the falafel, it will cause the oil temperature to drop, so adjust accordingly.
For the cucumber salad: roughly dice cucumber, onion, and tomato. Add the juice of a lemon and finely chopped parsley and cilantro. Mix it all together. You can serve immediately, but it is better if it marinates in the fridge for at least an hour. This is good to make the ahead along with the falafel mix.
For the tahini sauce: add tahini, garlic, lemon juice, and oil to a bowl and whisk it together. Then thin out the dressing to your desired level by mixing in water.