Growing up with a mother that was working night shifts as a nurse, lunch was often a quick bought meal and falafel was our go-to favourite. I would take some money from her bag and off I went to the local falafel shop - what a treat!
In Israel and other parts of the Middle East Falafel is a very popular street food and you can find it on every corner. This is a homemade version, once you make it you will never go back to the shop bought one.
Makes 20 small or 10 medium balls
Chickpeas 375g -soaked with 1 tablespoons of baking soda in water for a night drain well.( the baking soda is used just for soaking
chopped parsley or and coriander -2 big bunches each
chopped onion- ½
gf flour or gluten free bread crumbs 1-2 Tablespoons ( 1 piece of white deird bread )
Cumin ground 1/2 Tablespoon
Garlic cloves 2 or less
Paprika- 1/2 teaspoon
Salt 1/2 teaspoon
Rice bran or good quality oil for frying
A bit of water
1. pour the chickpeas onto a large plate. Check for damaged grains, small stones, or any other thing you would rather leave out of the dish.
2.Wash the chickpeas several times, until the water is transparent. soak them in clean water overnight with 1 tablespoon of baking soda. The grains should absorb most of the water and almost double their volume.
3. Chop the onion, garlic and parsley and put aside.
4. Drain the chickpeas and blend them lightly in the food processor (for best results use a mincer).
5. Mix all the ingredients together – the mixture should be thick enough to hold together and make into balls. If you find the mixture is too thick and dry add water, if it is too runny add a bit more flour.
6.Make small round balls size of a golf balls.
7. Fry the falafel in deep oil (180 C ˚ if you use thermometer) alternatively you can bake them in the oven at 180 C ˚, however this may not give the best results. Some people believe that deep frying is an unhealthy option, however when the oil is heated to a high enough heat, the falafel does not absorb the oil.
Variations - you can add a bit of cayenne pepper or fresh chili pepper (green or red) for more spiciness and some sesame seeds to give a bit of a nutty flavour.
Serve with tahini sauce or hummus in a warm pita pocket
Tahini paste 1 cup
Lemon juice 1/3 cup
Water ¾ cup ice cold water
Garlic cloves 2-3 crushed
For green tahini optional – 1 cup of finely chopped parsley
Mix the ingredients well together adding the water slowly until a runny or dip consistency as desired.