Our home is generally a no deep-fry zone. There are a few exceptions and falafel is one of them.
We’ve prepared this recipe more than once, fom Nic’s Baking Bites. and here are some notes from the margins of our recipe file:
1. Since these chickpeas will not be pre-cooked, they need to be soaked longer – 18-24 hours.
2. Keep some breadcrumbs/flour at hand to add to the mix if it is too wet. It should hold its shape when made into a ball.
3. If you choose to deep fry them (as we did here), don’t raise the oil temperature too high. 350 F is about right. If the oil is too hot, the outside gets too brown without the inside getting cooked.
4. We tried baking this at 375F for 15-20 minutes as suggested in the original recipe. It dries them out too much for our liking. If you choose to bake it, make sure the mix is not too dry. It will lead to broken/cracked falafels. Line the baking sheet with parchment/silicone. It will stick to foil.
5. If you don’t want to deep-fry them, cook the dough on the stove top for 5-6 minutes until it does not taste raw. Let it cool a bit, add a drop of water if it is too dry, then shape into balls, flatten them a tiny bit, then broil, or shallow fry in a teasoon or two of oil until crisp on both sides. Flattening the balls a bit yields more surface area, and more crunch.
(adapted from Baking Bites)
2 cups dried chickpeas, soaked 18-24 hours
1 tsp baking powder
1 onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
4 garlic cloves, smashed
2 tsps cumin powder
2 tsps coriander powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 handfuls fresh parsley
1 handful fresh cilantro
salt and pepper
breadcrumbs/flour for binding
1. Soak the dried chickpeas for 18-24 hours.
2. Rinse, drain and dry them on a towel.
3. Grind it to a fine, but not smooth paste with all the other ingredients except the breadcrumbs/flour. If it is too loose, add breadcrumbs/flour. It should hold its shape in your hand. Check the seasonings.
4. Refrigerate it for a while if you can. It helps to blend the flavours and make the mixture less wet.
5. Make 22-24 balls. Deep fry/bake/broil using the pointers above.
Serve with tarator sauce, on their own, or in a pita sandwich.
Tarator sauce: Mix tahini with garlic, salt, lemon juice and water. It should be runny and tangy.
Nupur’s yogurty version: Whisk together 1/2 cup yogurt, 1/2 cup tahini, 2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 minced garlic clove, 1/2 tsp cumin powder and salt to taste. Add a few tablespoons of water if the sauce looks too thick.
Also check out her falafel recipe.
Sending it over to Meeta at What’s for lunch, Honey? for her Arabian Nights Monthly Mingle.