Friday, April 22, 2011

You are the Falafel of my Eye

I'm thinking of you...
Ok, I woke this morning and all I could think about were sultry balls of mushed up chickpeas, deep fried, and stuffed into a warm pita with a cucumber dill yogurt sauce. I wasn't thinking about the dreary day outside, the impending 12 hour shift and the ridiculous weekend I am about to have with Earth Day Omaha , I was thinking about those warm falafel balls, crunchy with that mushy inside.  So here is a quick recipe for some easy falafel, yet they have a good kick of flavor to them. See, even my little rat Nom-Nom loves these falafel.
Nom Nom, Falafel!

What you need:

1 cup dry chickpeas (You can use the canned junk, but your texture will be much better if you use dried beans that you've soaked the night before.)
1 small onion
5 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup fresh cilantro (chopped)  - (I go a little lighter on the cilantro to fit personal taste.)
1//2 cup fresh parsley (chopped)
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons cumin (I use fresh seeds ground)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon coriander (ground)
pinch of cayenne pepper
Splash of lemon juice

What you do:

  • In a food processor or by hand finely chop the onion, garlic, parsley, and cilantro.  Add chickpeas.
  • Transfer to a large bowl and mix in spices and splash of lemon juice.
  • Once everything is incorporated add flour and baking powder and mix well.
  • Cover with saran wrap tightly and put in the fridge for 2 hours to set (You can get away with 1 hour, but what you're looking for here is a nice set to the mix so your balls stick together well.) 
  • After you have stood glaring in contempt at the fridge for two hours or whatever you do when you wait, form the falafel balls.  It is key to keep a good, small size, about the size of a golf ball to ensure you heat the product all of the way through.
We are done!
  • Heat your oil to 350 degrees and fry them off in small batches, until golden brown.
  • Removing to a plate with a paper towel to drain.  

For the Cucumber/Dill Yogurt Sauce

6 ounces of PLAIN yogurt (I use soy yogurts, so there is a subtle taste difference.)
1/2 cup cucumber (peeled, seeded, & finely diced.)
1 or 2 teaspoon of fresh dill weed (You can substitute the dry stuff, but, meh, go buy the fresh stuff. This doesn't keep for more than a day really.)
salt and pepper to taste

Mix this jazz together for a simple sauce.

So, there ya have it.  2 hour quick falafel that will kick the pants off your palette.  That, or bug the eyes out of your pet rat.
Eating her salad!

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