I have been meaning to post this recipe for falafel for a really long time now, but for some reason I've been stalling it.
I think remember the first time I had falafel, it was in London in 2003. I don't exactly remember them as an "explosion of Oriental flavours in my mouth", it was more like "hmm... these were pretty good". I think they were bought at Marks & Spencer, which might have been the reason why there weren't all that delicious. But obviously, they were delicious enough for me to want to try falafel again, so over the years I've had the odd falafel.
However, it wasn't until fairly recently, say about a year ago, that I realised I could make them at home. I had always envisioned the process time-consuming and tedious. This was until I came across an easy recipe for falafel-"burgers" at BBC GoodFood.
I know, a falafel-burger sounds pretty horrid, but the recipe is great for making small patties to stuff in toasted pita-breads and serves with side dished such as tabbouleh, crisp salad, thinly sliced red onions and a minty yoghurt sauce to drizzle on top. It sounds pretty delicious, right?!
The recipe calls for canned chickpeas, and after having tried both the canned sort and the dried sort that you have to soak in water for at least 12 hours, I can definitely say I prefer the canned peas for this particular recipe. I couldn't get the dried peas soft enough, and deep-frying the falafel didn't help to soften them one bit...
Adapted from BBC GoodFood
400 g can chickpeas, drained
1-2 garlic cloves
1 handful parsley
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
½ tsp harissa or chilli powder
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp oil
pita breads, chopped tomatoes, tabbouleh, red onions and yoghurt sauce
1. In a food processor, mix the chickpeas, garlic, parsley and spices plus the flour to a rather smooth mix. You can leave it chunkier if you prefer more texture.
2. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry small-ish balls of the chickpea mixture until heated through, golden brown and crisp on the outside.