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Tue 27 Feb 2018 11:43:00 PST


  • garbanzo beans 1 lb
  • onion, yellow 1/2 onion
  • parsley, fresh 1/4 cup
  • garlic 3-5 cloves
  • chickpea flour † 1½ tbsp
  • salt 3/4-1 tsp
  • cumin, ground 2 tsp
  • coriander, ground 1 tsp
  • cardamom, ground 1/4-1/2 tsp
  • black pepper 1/4 tsp
  • cayenne pepper 1/4 tsp
Processing the mixture
  1. Put all ingredients in food processor. Process in short bursts, between scraping down the sides to make sure all the ingredients get reduced to small particle size. The idea is to have the mixture reach a "sticky" consistency but still have enough texture. It resembles coarse wet sand when sufficiently processed.
  2. Scrape the contents into a bowl and refrigerate for an hour or more. It can stay there overnight without harm. Not ideal but if in a huge hurry, you can speed up chilling the mixture. Put the bowl in the freezer for 5-10 minutes, remove to mix thoroughly. Repeat several times and in ~30 minutes the mixture will be cooled to 50°F or so.
Forming and frying:
  • Oil for frying 2-4 cups
  1. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Pour in sufficient oil to fill pan about 1/2 full, around 3/4 in (2 cm) should be about right.
  2. Form balls of chickpea mix about 2 tablespoons (30 ml) in volume. A 1/8 cup coffee measure works well. Similarly an ice cream scooper of the right size will work too.
  3. When oil is sufficiently hot, carefully place formed chickpea balls into pan using a slotted spoon. Hot oil causes severe burns, so make sure the cooking environment is safe and without distractions.
  4. The part of the falafel in the oil will brown in about 2 minutes. Turn falafel balls periodically to make sure all parts brown. Remove from pan as they finish, putting uncooked falafel in oil to start frying. Repeat until all are cooked.
  5. After frying put falafel on a paper towel to drain excess oil.
  6. Serve immediately. Falafel can be stored in refrigerator for several days and reheated before serving.
Chickpea flour acts as a binding agent. If the falafel falls apart in the fryer try using flaxseed meal, 1 tbsp, in addition to or instead of the chickpea flour.

Many herbs/spices can be used in falafel. Cilantro, mint, oregano, marjoram, scallions, cardamon are Mediterranean natives worth trying. Sesame, pistachio and other flavorings have their fans. If you like hot sauce, you really should try Zhug, another Yemenite classic. Highly recommended!

For deep frying the falafel, an induction cooker and heavy cast-iron flat-bottom wok are a useful combination. Setting the frying temperature to ~350°F produces good results. Eliminating guesswork re: correct cooking temperature is a notable advantage. This also applies to small fryers for home use available at modest cost.

Categories: legumes middle-east

About Thinair Recipes

Recipes developed with low-sodium diets in mind—so easy to use!

Here's a quick guide:
Recipes have one or more “boxed” ingredient lists grouped with step-by-step instructions, for example:

  • garlic, chopped 3 cloves
  • chicken stock 2 cups
  • ...other ingredients...
  1. Saute garlic in oil until soft.
  2. Add chicken stock to pan...
  3. step...

Ingredient boxes show what you'll need for the numbered steps. Not too complicated!

BTW “salt” in our recipes refers to salt substitute, i.e., potassium chloride, KCl. (Since KCl may not be healthy for some people, ask your doctor if it's OK for you to use it.)