Recipe: Homemade Falafel
Image via Flickr (Creative Commons)
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I’ve travelled to three North African countries this year – Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia – and in each of them, I’ve enjoyed at least one meal of delicious falafel. It’s a really popular lunch time food in that part of the world.
I’ve discovered it’s pretty popular in Norwich too. My favourite haunt The Bicycle Shop usually has it on the menu, and the sublime Moorish Falafel Bar here provides the fastest and tastiest falafel I’ve ever had in the UK, all day every day.
It seemed about time for me to try making my own falafel, so I gathered some friends and organised a falafel night at my apartment. Here’s the recipe and some photos from the night…
For the falafel:
400g can of mixed beans
400g can of chickpeas
1 tbsp harissa paste
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp plain flour
1 bunch of fresh coriander
1 bunch of fresh parsley
1 clove of fresh garlic
a dash of Borderfields rapeseed oil
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
To go alongside:
your choice of veg for roasting
salsa – mine was homemade, recipe to come
Crosta & Mollica Piada flatbreads
a pot of sour cream
What to do:
1. Roughly chop your veg and pop them in a dish to roast while you make the falafel. About 25 minutes at 180°C degrees followed by 5-10 minutes at 200°C usually works a treat, but check them to avoid burning (though a little charring is encouraged).
2. Drain the chickpeas and mixed beans through a sieve, then pop them into a food processor.
3. Add the dried herbs, the flour and the harissa paste. Add the zest of the lemon, followed by the garlic and the fresh herbs.
4. Blend until smooth, or still with a few lumps depending on your preference. Wet your hands to stop the mixture sticking to your fingertips and shape into small balls.
5. Put just a dash of rapeseed oil into a frying pan and bring to a medium heat. Add the falafel balls, pressing them down with a spatula so they begin to resemble patties. When the patties turn a darker colour and become crisp, flip them over and cook the other side.
6. Stick your flatbreads into the oven for a few minutes to warm up.
7. Serve all the different bits as a platter in the middle of your table and let everyone dig in and make their own wrap from falafel and sides.