Falafel

Falafel

By
From
Arabesque
Makes
36
Photographer
William Meppem

These spicy patties are a favourite snack all around the Middle East, and from Lebanese takeaway shops the world over. Different versions of falafel abound – in Egypt they are made using dried broad beans alone, whereas in Israel, Lebanon and Syria they are usually made with chickpeas. Others still, like the recipe which follows, use a combination of the two. These home-made falafel are far superior to any you can buy. They are spicy and fragrant and the fresh coriander adds a lovely bright-green colour. It is better to use skinless split broad beans rather than the whole, unskinned variety.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
100g split broad beans, soaked in 1 litre of cold water overnight
100g chickpeas, soaked in 1 litre of cold water overnight
1 1/2 cups fresh coriander, roots removed
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 small chilli, finely chopped
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
750ml olive oil, for frying

Method

  1. Drain the beans and chickpeas. Rinse well and dry.
  2. In a food processor, whiz the beans and chickpeas with a pinch of salt until they are the consistency of coarse, sticky breadcrumbs. Add all the other ingredients and whiz until they combine to form a bright-green paste which still has a fine crumb. Don’t overwhiz – the paste should not be smooth and wet. Refrigerate for half an hour before frying.
  3. Heat the oil to 180°C. It is ready when a cube of bread sizzles slowly to the top and turns a pale golden-brown. Shape the falafel into little patties and fry for 6–7 minutes until they are a deep brown. Eat the falafel straight away, dipped into tahini sauce or stuffed into Arabic bread, with salad and a squeeze of lemon.

Note

  • You can also use fresh yeast as a raising agent instead of the bicarbonate of soda. This will give you an even lighter crisper falafel. Use 15 g yeast blended with a tablespoon of warm water.
Tags:
Middle East
Middle Eastern
Arabic
Arabian
Arabesque
Greg
Lucy
Malouf
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