½ cup uncooked quinoa
½ cup cooked chickpeas, crushed
1 clove garlic, minced
4 scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
¼ cup Italian parsley, finely chopped
Zest of 1 lemon (Use a Microplane grater!)
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon Sriracha (optional)
For the Avocado-Tomato Relish:
½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved (I used heirlooms because I love them)
1 ripe avocado, diced
2 scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Fresh ground pepper
Cook the quinoa according to the package directions, and let it cool to room temperature.
In a mixing bowl, mash the chickpeas using a potato masher, fork, or the back of a large spoon. Add the cooked quinoa, garlic, scallions, parsley, lemon zest, olive oil and Sriracha (if using) to the mashed chickpeas. Season the mixture with salt to taste.
Transfer the falafel mixture to a food processor or blender, and pulse a few times until the ingredients hold together a bit. You don’t want a puree, you just want a coarse "dough" that will stick together.
Use your hands to form the falafel mixture into tablespoon-sized balls. You should have enough for about a dozen small falafel. Briefly set aside while you make your relish.
Combine all of the ingredients for the relish in a small bowl. Set aside while you cook your falafel.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the falafel and cook for about 3 minutes per side (you can gently press each ball down with the back of a spatula to form a thick pancake if it makes things easier.) Remove falafel to a paper towel-lined plate to drain any excess oil.
Serve the falafel warm with relish and yogurt-tahini dressing.
2 tablespoons tahini
¼ cup boiling water
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup Vegenaise (or non-fat greek yogurt)
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Fresh ground pepper
Bring ¼ cup water to a boil.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the tahini until smooth.
Pour the tahini mixture into a bowl and add the garlic, vegenaise, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Whisk until the dressing is smooth. Keep refrigerated.