Monday, June 1, 2009
Falafel - Recipes to Rival Chickpea Challenge
The May Recipes to Rival - Chickpeas was a challenge of choice that centered around chickpeas in disparate forms. Lori of Lori's Lipsmaking Goodness was this month's hostess and she gave us two possibilities. We could opt to make chick pea fries using a Mark Bittman recipe or falafel using one developed by Madelain Farahand. Participants electing to make falafel also had to make homemade pita to accompany the chickpea patties. I chose the later and decided to use a recipe for Country-Style Whole Wheat Pita Bread undertaken by the Bread Baking Babes before I started blogging. Lori kindly included a tahini sauce to accompany the falafel. I made that as well as a thin tsatsiki that my husband, suspicious of non-meat entrées, could use to drown the falafel if it proved necessary. The recipe for falafel comes from Madelain Farah's, Lebanese Cuisine, Four Walls Eight Windows, 2001. My changes to her recipe are highlighted in red. I had a good time with this challenge and enjoyed the falafel. Bob maybe not so much. He didn't complain, but he used copious amounts of sauce, actually ate the tabouleh I made as an accompaniment and couldn't stop raving about the pita. Nary a word about the falafel. Go figure!
Falafel: Chickpea Patties
1 pound dried chickpeas
1 small onion, coarsely chopped 1 small grated onion + it's onion juice
1/4 cup parsley, minced
1/4 cup cilantro, minced
2 cloves garlic, crushed 3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin 1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes, optional
Salt and pepper, as needed 1 tablespoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/2 cup vegetable oil 4 cups vegetable oil for deep frying
6 to 8 pitas, tops sliced open and lightly toasted
Shredded lettuce, as needed
Tomato wedges, as needed
Sliced red onion, as needed
Sliced cucumbers, as needed
Tahini sauce (see below)
1) Soak the chickpeas in cold water in the refrigerator overnight.
2) Drain the chickpeas . Place chickpeas grated onion and onion juice, parsley and cilantro in bowl of a food processor. Add garlic, flour, coriander, baking soda, cumin, chili flakes, salt and pepper and process until finely ground and well-combined. The mixture will be slightly mealy. Using a tablespoon measure form into walnut-sized balls. Place in a single layer in a large pan, cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 to 24 hours. Deep fry, six at a time, in hot oil. Drain on paper towels. Yield: 48 to 52 balls.
3) Stuff warm pita with shredded lettuce and nestle the falafel balls inside. Top with remainder of ingredients and drizzle with tahini or thin tsatsiki sauce. Serve immediately.
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup tahini
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup lemon juice
Mash garlic and salt together. Add tahini, mixing well. Gradually add water, blending thoroughly. Add lemon juice. Blend well. Yield : 4 to 6 servings.