Falafels are such a versatile option. They have a soft center and a crunchy exterior. The middle eastern flavors come through in this recipe. It is easy and simple to make and you can pair this with pasta or rice and topped with either hummus or tahini. For a more traditional style serve with hummus and tahini along with Pita Bread.
You can make these with fava beans if you want a more Egyptian/Indian vibe. These are typically called ” ta’amiya”. This type was typically made by Egypt and India.
If you want a more Jewish/Egyptian and Syrian flare Make these with chickpeas. This type was made typically by Jews in Egypt along with Lebanon, Jordan and, Isreal.
If you want a little bit of both worlds use half fava beans and half chickpeas. All three are simply delicious. I have tried them all. The traditional recipes call for them to be deep-fried or just fried in general. However, I do not like using a whole ton of oil so, I have adapted this to be baked and not fried. They still have all the flavor and crunch with a soft texture in the middle as a traditional falafel would.
Typically both regions would smash the chickpeas or fava beans to a slight paste consistency and chop the other ingredients very finely and mix them all together and make into patties and fry them.
For me, I would serve them in many ways such as the traditional way, in pita bread with a light salad mix with tahini, Over a salad with a tahini dressing or just dunk them in hummus and eat them as a snack. However, you devour these you are sure to love them.
1 can chickpeas ( drained and rinsed well)
2 tbsp minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
1 small onion (chopped)
1 tbsp parsley (chopped) you can use dried as well
1 tbsp flour ( traditionally chickpea flour)
4 tsp coriander
2 tsp cumin
Salt and pepper to taste (optional) about 1 3/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp ground chili or cayenne pepper
a small pinch of cardamom
- Preheat the oven to 400*. In a food processor add in all of the ingredients and pulse to combine well. Pulse until paste forms. Check to see if the mixture will hold its shape. If not pulse a few more times and check again or you can add a little bit more flour to thicken the mixture. Be careful not to add to much flour as it will make the batter too thick and heavy.
- When The batter is the right consistency remove to a bowl and begin to roll the mixture into balls and flatten slightly to form patties. Place on a lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and gently turn them over to cook an additional 20 to 25 minutes. The outside will be a golden color.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool about 10 minutes or so before serving. The falafel will harden slightly when cooling and will hold their shape better.
Typically in the traditional way, both regions would soak either the chickpeas or fava beans in water overnight to soften and plump up the beans. They would drain and rinse them before making the dish. You can do it the traditional way or you can use a can of chickpeas or fava beans. Either way, you decide to make them they are delicious.
The more traditional way is a little more time consuming but they both offer the same flavor and similar in texture.