Falafel is a vegetarian recipe that is high in protein, high in fibre, low in fat and full of nutrients.
- 1 pound (about 2 cups) dry chickpeas/garbanzo beans
- 1 small onion, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 3-5 cloves garlic (I prefer roasted)
- 1 1/2 tbsp flour
- 1 3/4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Pinch of ground cardamom
- Vegetable oil for frying (grapeseed, canola, and peanut oil work well)
You will also need
- Pour the chickpeas into a large bowl and cover them by about 3 inches of cold water.
- Let them soak overnight. They will double in size as they soak – you will have between 4 and 5 cups of beans after soaking.
- Drain and rinse the chickpeas well.
- Pour them into your food processor along with the chopped onion, garlic cloves, parsley, flour, salt, cumin, ground coriander, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and cardamom.
- Pulse all ingredients together until a rough, coarse meal forms.
- Scrape the sides of the processor periodically and push the mixture down the sides.
- Process till the mixture is somewhere between the texture of couscous and a paste. You want the mixture to hold together, and a more paste-like consistency will help with that… but don’t overprocess, you don’t want it turning into hummus!
- Once the mixture reaches the desired consistency, pour it out into a bowl and use a fork to stir; this will make the texture more even throughout.
- Remove any large chickpea chunks that the processor missed.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
- Fill a skillet with vegetable oil to a depth of 1 ½ inches. I prefer to use cooking oil with a high smoke point, like grapeseed.
- Heat the oil slowly over medium heat.
- Meanwhile, form falafel mixture into round balls or slider-shaped patties using wet hands or a falafel scoop. I usually use about 2 tbsp of mixture per falafel. You can make them smaller or larger depending on your personal preference. The balls will stick together loosely at first, but will bind nicely once they begin to fry. *Problems falling apart! If you can get them into the hot oil, they will bind together and stick. If they still won’t hold together, you can try adding 2-3 tbsp of flour to the mixture. If they still won’t hold, add 1-2 eggs to the mix.
- Before frying the first batch of falafel, test-fry one in the center of the pan. If the oil is at the right temperature, it will take 2-3 minutes per side to brown (5-6 minutes total). If it browns faster than that, your oil is too hot and your falafels will not be fully cooked in the center.
- Cool the oil down slightly and try again. When the oil is at the right temperature, fry the falafels in batches of 5-6 at a time till golden brown on both sides.
- Once the falafels are fried, remove them from the oil using a slotted spoon. Let them drain on paper towels.
- Serve the falafels fresh and hot; they go best with a plate of hummus and topped with creamy tahini sauce. You can also stuff them into a pita.