Falafel has been on my to-make list for the longest. I don’t like deep frying-being calorie conscious is one reason, but the other important reason is I don’t like to deal with all that used oil. If I ever make a deep fried dish, I make sure that I use the oil only once for deep frying and the leftover oil gets used in everyday dishes 1tsp at a time. I also make sure that I transfer the leftover oil from the frying pan to a smaller container to make sure that the pan doesn’t form an oil stain and for easy handling.
Nice little tip I learnt from Martha Stewart for disposing used oil is to use lots of paper towels to soak up the oil before washing. Never ever drain oil directly in the sink; this will adversely affect your drainage system.
Ok since the housekeeping is taken care of; let me move onto the falafel now. The recipe is from Vegetarian Times magazine and I had it bookmarked forever now. Finally got to make it this past weekend when we had friends over for a “Middle-Eastern” themed dinner party.
The recipe uses canned chickpeas and shallow fries the patties, which is probably not authentic, but the end result was just as yummy as the fried ones. I doubled the recipe and was able to make 30 patties, enough for 8-10 servings.
In a food processor, pulse chickpeas, garlic, tahini, egg, lemon zest & juice, salt and spices until mostly smooth, but still a little chunky.
Transfer to a bowl and add flour, onions and parsley. Mix well to combine. Make ¼” thick patties with about ¼ cup of chickpea mixture.
I lined the patties up on a foil covered baking sheet, wrapped them in plastic wrap and refrigerated them the night before I was going to make the falafel. I took them out of the fridge an hour before frying to take the chill off.
Pour olive oil into a shallow pan to cover about ¼” in the bottom. Add the patties in batches and fry on medium-high flame and fry for about 3 mins per side or until golden brown. Make sure that the patties don’t touch while frying.
Drain the patties on paper towel lined platter. Repeat with remaining patties.
I served them with Pita bread, quick tahini sauce (½ cup each of tahini & yogurt mixed with ground cumin, salt & pepper, lemon juice), store-bought hot falafel chutney and cucumber & tomato salad. Enjoy!!