Falafel (/fəˈlɑːfəl/; Arabic: فلافل, [fæˈlæːfɪl] ( listen)) is a deep-fried ball or patty made from ground chickpeas, fava beans, or both. Falafel is a traditional Arab food, usually served in a pita, which acts as a pocket, or wrapped in a flatbread known as lafa; "falafel" also frequently refers to a wrapped sandwich that is prepared in this way. The falafel balls are topped with salads, pickled vegetables, hot sauce, and drizzled with tahini-based sauces. Falafel balls may also be eaten alone as a snack or served as part of a meze.
Generally accepted to have first been made in Egypt, falafel has become a dish eaten throughout the Middle East. The Copts of Egypt claim to have first made the dish as a replacement for meat during Lent. The fritters are now found around the world as a replacement for meat and as a form of street food.
2 1/4 cups cooked chickpeas
3 scallions, coarsely chopped
1 large clove garlic, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Generous 1/4 cup coarsely chopped parsley
Generous 1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
1 lemon, juiced
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup flour, plus 1/4 cup flour for shaping patties
Vegetable oil, for frying
Lettuce, for garnish
Chopped salted tomatoes, for garnish
Grated cucumber, for garnish
White Bean Yogurt Sauce, recipe follows
In a food processor, combine the chickpeas, scallions, garlic, cumin, coriander, cayenne, parsley, cilantro, egg, and lemon juice. Pulse to combine and season with salt. The mixture will not be smooth, but it should not have large chunks.
Add in the baking powder and 1/3 cup of the flour and pulse to just combine. Remove to a bowl and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Remove the chickpea mixture from the refrigerator. Add enough oil to a large saute pan so it reaches 1/2-inch up the sides and heat it over medium-high heat until an inserted thermometer reads 360 degrees F.
Meanwhile, drop spoonfuls of the chickpea mixture onto a plate with 1/4 cup flour. Roll into balls on the floured plate and press gently into patties. Fry in batches of hot oil for about 3 to 4 minutes each side and drain on paper towels.
Serve the falafel on a bed of lettuce with chopped salted tomatoes, grated cucumber and White Bean Yogurt Sauce.
Creamy White Bean Yogurt Sauce
3/4 cup cooked white beans
1 small garlic clove, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Puree the white beans, garlic, yogurt, lemon juice, and olive oil in a mini food processor until very smooth. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve with falafel or as a salad dressing
Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/melissa-darabian/falafel-recipe/index.html?oc=linkback