Tuesday, February 21, 2012

falafel is my favorite

falafel is my favorite meal. after many failed attempts at cooking this at home, i think i've finally perfected a no-fail recipe that i'm so excited to share with you.

just remember, if you skip a step or don't follow directions exactly, you'll end up with a pile of burnt crumbs floating in your cooking oil.

[at least that's what happened to me the first several tries.]

falafel {mediterranean chickpea patties}

1 cup dry chickpeas
1 small onion
5 cloves of garlic
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 bunch fresh parsley
1 teaspoon salt (or more. i like more)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 tablespoons flour
Oil for frying

1. soak the chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans) in plenty of water overnight.
2. in a large food processor, combine onions, garlic, parsley and cilantro. add the chickpeas and spices and chop until you have a pasty mixture. mix in the flour and baking powder, which will make the mix into more of a dough.
3. cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. after waiting patiently for at least two hours (it's important!), remove the falafel mix from the refrigerator.
4. in a large pot, heat up vegetable oil for frying, careful not to let it smoke too much. to form the falafel balls, I use a medium-sized pampered chef scoop, probably about 2 tablespoons, and form the mixture into a patty shape. it takes just a couple of minutes to deep fry each side. remove onto some paper towels. 
5. i serve with red onion, tomato and a yogurt cucumber sauce. my kids like theirs in pitas, but i like mine without. this recipe serves 4-5 people (about 20 balls) and i always double it and freeze the leftovers.

muhummara is a middle eastern dipping sauce with a roasted red pepper and pomegranate molasses base. i tried it for the first time several weeks ago and it is my new favorite thing. you can order the pomegranate molasses from amazon for a pretty reasonable price. i highly recommend it! [enough to use an exclamation point.] this recipe is so easy, just a matter of tossing in ingredients into a food processor. that's it. you could even use a blender if you don't have a food processor yet.


a 7-ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained*
2/3 cup fine fresh bread crumbs
1/3 cup walnuts
2 garlic cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
4 teaspoons pomegranate molasses
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1. combine all ingredients except oil in food processor. mix well. [i actually chopped an old dinner roll first to get my 2/3 cups bread crumbs, then added the rest of the ingredients].
2. add oil slowly with mixer going until oil is incorporated.
3. you can serve this dip with pita wedges or like we did, with hearts of romaine.

*to save you some grocery store wandering, you can find these by the jarred olives, peppers and pickles.


  1. I went back to Cafe Mix a few weeks ago and ordered the falafel again. It was SOOO spicey I almost died. I think I'll try your recipe one of these days.

  2. i made falafel once and my house smelled for WEEKS. but... now i want to make your recipe, because it looks and sounds delicious, and your recipes are always the best. also clint loves them too.