Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Falafel Balls

Falafel Balls

When planning our dinner menu for the week I always try to do a vegetarian dish at least three times a week. This is a challenge because my husband is a meat and potatoes kind of guy.

Before I met my husband I went through a period when I did not eat meat. My husband is a wonderful man, but he will not allow our household to become vegetarians. Therefore, I have come up with a compromise that works great with the entire family.

I found an amazing recipe for Falafels on Food Network that fit the bill for our vegetarian main dish this week. I have cooked Falafels in the past using other recipes and even the box mix, but these were much better. I did not follow the recipe entirely so I will list my changes here.

Falafel Balls


1 can chickpeas (14.5oz) - drained
3 scallions/green onions cleaned and sliced
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsely
1 teaspoon ground minced cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon warm water
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup of old-fashioned oatmeal (ground in the food processor - very fine)

Drain chickpeas and place them in food processor. Add scallions, garlic, parsley, cumin, salt, egg and hot sauce. Mix baking powder with water and add mixture to food processor. Process until smooth. Transfer mixture into a small bowl. Add breadcrumbs and oatmeal until mixture is dough-like without sticking to your hands.

I placed this mixture in the refrigerator for an hour or so to allow it to harden and become less sticky.

Pour the oil to a depth of 2 inches in a heavy saucepan. Heat to 375 degrees. Roll into small balls and flatten slightly. Slip a few at a time into the hot oil, making sure they don't stick to the bottom. Cook, turning, for about 2 minutes, or until the balls are a dark, even brown on all sides. Remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.

I served these in pita bread with yogurt sauce. The kids ate them in the pita without the yogurt sauce.

Falafels are also great served in a pita with cucumber and tomato.

I served the Falafels with a cucumber salad, blackeye peas and some tortilla chips. I know it sounds odd, but it worked.