These falafels are my take on traditional falafel recipes which are naturally vegan, gluten-free and vegetarian friendly. My introduction to these Middle Eastern appetizers were first done 22 years back in Australia, when an Iraqi friend opened up her restaurant and showed me how to cook this most delicious comforting appetizer.
Moving into the Middle East developed my love for these gorgeous crispy green balls even more.
These falafels are best made with dried and soaked chickpeas, not canned. Canned chickpeas go mushy and would be soggy in texture. These are a good source of vegetarian protein traditionally served with a dipping sauce called ‘tahini’ made with sesame paste, garlic and lemon which makes the best combo served either in pita pockets or wraps with fresh salad.
If you are watching your diet and counting on your calorie intake, these can be easily made in air fryer or baked in the oven too. For your convenience, I have shared the recipe of how to and bake and air fry them in the tips.
YIELDS: 25 pieces
PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOKING TIME: 15-20 minutes
PASSIVE TIME: 6 hours to overnight
1 cup chickpeas
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or chilli powder
1 small onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic
3-4 tbsp of parsley, chopped
1/2 tsp sesame seeds
Salt to taste
Oil for frying
Soak chickpeas overnight or for 6 to 8 hours; drain and put in food processor.
Add all other ingredients except sesame seeds and baking soda; blend to make coarse paste. Now add sesame seeds, baking soda and powder.
With the help of falafel instrument or ice-cream scoop, shape them in thick disks or flat balls and deep fry in medium hot oil for 2 to 3 minutes each side until golden brown.
Serve as it is with tahina sauce or make pita pockets with salad and tahina.
Falafels are best cooked with soaked chickpeas. Do not use canned chickpeas to make falafels as they will go mushy.
If you are conscious about your calorie intake you can make baked falafels in the oven or air fry them.
In the Oven: Bake the falafel balls at 200°C for 18-20 minutes, flip and bake for another 15 minutes.
In the Air Fryer: Spray the falafel balls with non-stick cooking spray or oil and bake them at 180°C for 20-22 minutes.