Chickpeas are one of the world’s healthiest foods and coming up with new creative ways to eat them is a top priority. Sometimes, however, the old way is the new way. Falafel is an ancient dish, but if you didn’t grow up eating falafel (like most Westerners) then it is a new exciting thing to try and possibly even incorporate into your weekly meals. This is a basic recipe, but feel free to try out different things and see what goes well with these little guys.
Would a little avocado in the middle taste good or some cheese? What if you use a chipotle sauce instead? Do these taste better baked instead of fried? Let us know what variation tasted the best to you in the comments below. 🙂
Serves: 6-8 Cooking time: 15 minutes Difficulty: easy
- 2 cups dried chickpeas
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small yellow onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 cup packed fresh parsley leaves
- Zest of 1 lemon
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- 1½ teaspoons Kosher salt, plus more for seasoning after cooking
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Oil for frying
For yogurt-cucumber sauce:
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 small cucumber, shredded and drained
- 1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 spring onion
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
Gluten free pita bread or tortillas for assembling the sandwich.
To make the sauce:
Simply place all the ingredients in a small food processor and pulse a couple of times, until all ingredients are thoroughly blended.
To make the falafel:
- Place chickpeas in a large bowl and fill with water to cover them to a depth of 3 inches. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave on counter for 24 hours. The chickpeas will triple in size and absorb quite a bit of the water so check a few times during soaking to see if you need to add more water.Once the beans have soaked for 24 hours, drain and rinse well.
- Place the drained chickpeas, ground spices, garlic, onion, cilantro, and parsley in food processor.
- Mix the lemon zest, cayenne, salt, and black pepper into the ground chickpeas, then rolls a small amount of the mixture into a walnut sized ball or a small patty with your hands. You can also use a small scoop. The mixture should hold together nicely and not fall apart.
Continue rolling the rest of the batter into uniform size balls or patties so that they will cook in the same amount of time. Place the uncooked falafel on a large plate or baking sheet until ready to cook.
- Pour oil in a large, high-sided skillet to a depth of 2-3 inches, enough to cover the falafel, over medium-high heat.
- When the oil has reached the desired temperature, fry a test falafel. The oil should bubble up and sizzle all around it. The falafel itself should stay together in one piece and not break apart at all. It should take 2 – 3 minutes to fry to a beautiful golden brown. If your falafel is not completely submerged flip and cook the other side until it’s nice and browned all over. Remove the cooked falafel from the oil and drain on a baking sheet lined with a paper grocery bag, or paper towels. Sprinkle with coarse salt while the falafel is still hot. Fry the remaining falafel in batches, being careful to not overcrowd the pan and drop the temp of the oil.