Jez Higgins

Freelance software generalist
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Sunday 01 July 2012 Cooking with Pete: Falafels

Falafels, the little Levantine chickpea patties, are pretty common about the place these day. Supermarkets stock them as a sop to non-sausage eating vegetarian types like myself, no music festival is complete with out a falafel vendor, and they're not that hard to find at take-aways or street carts. Last weekend, Harry bought a falafel wrap at our local market and, while he enjoyed the falafel, wasn't so keen on the sauces and condiments with it. We decided to cook our own so we could choose exactly what went in the wrap with them. They were ace, and I'd really recommend you have a go.

Scour your cupboards for

  • 500g (aka a bag) of dried chickpeas
  • An onion or two
  • A bit less than half a bulb of garlic, 4 or 5 cloves
  • 3 tsp ground cumin
  • 3 tsp ground coriander
  • good pinch of chilli powder
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • 3 tsp of salt
  • Bunch of parsley

Stick the chickpeas in a bowl, cover with cold water and let soak for at least 24 hours. They'll swell to about double size, so make sure the bowl is nice and large, and the water is nice and deep.

  1. Drain the chickpeas. Put them in a food processor with everything except the chopped parsley. Process really well, until the mixture is smooth and holds together. You might have to poke it around a bit.
    This was the first time in years we'd cracked out the food processor, and it made pretty short work of it. You could use a hand blender, but it would be hard work. You could, if you had nothing else to do, bash away with a mortar and pestle. And if you do, my hat is off to you.
  2. Let is stand for half an hour or so.
  3. Strip the parsley off the stalks, and chop it up. Mix into the chickpea paste.
  4. Form the paste into little rounds or balls. We shaped them using a couple of soup spoons. You can do this ahead of time if you like, or just as you go like we did.
  5. Deep fry until nicely browned and crisp. We used about an inch of corn oil in a wok and it worked fine. Drain on kitchen paper and chow down.

This quantity made about two dozen falafels and between five of us we eat all but four. We served them with flat breads, salad, yoghurt and mint, green and black olives, and some tahini sauce. (Light tahini, mixed with lemon juice and a bit of garlic until it goes stiff, then thinned with water until creamy.)

Replace the chickpeas with dried broad beans (slip the skins off the beans once they've soaked) to make Egyptian ta'amia, or use a combination of chickpeas and beans.


Tagged recipe, and cooking-with-pete


Jez Higgins

Freelance software generalist
software created
extended or repaired

Older posts are available in the archive or through tags.

Feed

Follow me on Twitter
My code on GitHub

Contact
About