Last week I decided to try my hand at baking falafel. It was partly because I’d never made falafel before, and wanted to give it a try, but it was also because I wanted to put my tzatziki on it. I’m not a fan of frying things, though, so the baked version seemed like the way to go. And it was…eventually.
My first attempt at making baked falafel is what I liked to call a falafail.
If you haven’t closed the page out of disgust at that terrible wordplay, here’s what went wrong: the falafel was so dry that it crumbled apart if I so much as looked at it, which made it difficult to eat. The flavor was really good, but it needed extra sauce to counteract the dryness.
So I tweaked the recipe, baked for less time, and voilà, delicious baked falafel.
Successfalafel? Yeah, let’s forget I ever tried that.
Luckily the food is better than the word. It went perfectly with my tzatziki, for a delicious falafel pita sandwich. Speaking of pita, I made that, too, because my grocery store didn’t have any. But while mine tasted great, it failed to develop a pocket. So I’ve gotta work on that one. In the meantime, here’s my recipe for baked falafel.
2 15-ounce cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained (3 cups)
1/2 onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup chopped)
1/2 tsp baking soda
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1/2 cup loosely packed parsley
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
pinch cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Add garlic, parsley, lemon juice, cumin, coriander, cayenne, salt, pepper, to a food processor and pulse to combine.
Add chickpeas, onion, and baking soda to the food processor and pulse until incorporated but still slightly chunky. You want to maintain a bit of texture.
Grease a large rimmed baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.
Scoop bean mixture with a 1/4-cup measuring cup, roll into a ball, then flatten into thick patties about 1/2-inch thick. Repeat for a total of 9-10 patties.
Freeze for 30 minutes. Brush the tops with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Bake until golden all over, 20 to 25 minutes on each side.
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