First of all, did you know my first cookbook got published? It’s called Cookbook #1: A French Girl’s Cooking Adventures in Her Kitchen, and it’s available online, you’re just a click away, RIGHT HERE!
This falafel making attempt is a first trial based on the recipe of the great blogger I’ve been following recently “Falafelinlove“, and to whom I’ve made the promise to try her amazing falafel recipe ASAP, because it already seemed so delicious just from reading about it ! The only differences here are that I have used dried chickpeas (soaked overnight, not cooked) and I added in some hot green pepper (imported from the Middle East) during the processing step, because at home we love to eat everything very hot and spicy.
I bring here in this post Falafelinlove’s recipe almost as it is (with the few tiny little changes of my own I mentioned), but don’t forget to check out her blog for additional tips and extra ideas about falafels and more, because she is much more professional about falafels than I am for now. The way she writes will make you hungry, I guarantee ! In the meantime, have a first look at my very first homemade falafels. As I was not sure how they would come out in shape and taste, I randomly made some with round shape, flat shape and “real” shape (hahaha!). Here are the closest to real shape.
As you might have already read on my blog, in one of my latest post about making Hummus, I just come back from an amazing one-week-trip to Israel where my husband and I had a blast all week long. We visited a lot of places, met with our friends, and had a lot of great foods, every day at every meal ! But surely the food we had the most often during our stay was falafel and hummus. We particularly loved in Tel-Aviv the Shuk Ha-Carmel, and in Jerusalem the Mahane Yehuda food and spices market, in which you can eat all kinds of local specialties. Dried fruits, tea leaves, spices, vegetables and aromatic herbs just all over the place ! As falafels use lots of parsley and spices, I thought I’d show you one or two of the many pictures I took there. There soon will be a post about this, because it cannot remain untold about !
Now, about the cooking of my falafels, the slight adaptations to my own taste, and the techniques explained in details by Falafelinlove. Here is first a little photos gallery of the different steps and process, then find the recipe and directions below. Enjoy and don’t hesitate to give me comments. Do you make falafels ? Have you also tried various techniques before you reach the best result ? Can you add some more tips and advice ? Any other variations in the recipe itself in regards to spices etc ? Share with us !
- 1 cup of dried chickpeas (soaked 12 hours in cold water)
- 4 big cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp of coriander
- 3 tsp of cumin
- 1 tsp of baking powder
- 1 tsp of Cayenne pepper flakes
- 4 hot green pepper (clear green color) from the Middle East
- 1/2 tsp of Paprika
- 1 tsp of salt
- 1/2 tsp of black pepper
- 1/4 tsp of nutmeg
- 2 handful of chopped fresh parsley
- 1/2 large white onions (I like to use one whole scallion instead, if available)
- 4 to 5 tbsp of flour
- Soak the chickpeas overnight for a minimum of 12 hours. IF you decide to cook them (which I didnt), check regularly the saucepan and make sure to add enough water from time to time to avoid burning it all . In all cases, dry them well with paper towel.
- Pulse in a food processor to a smooth paste.
- If you’re making large quantities, set aside in a big bowl about 3/4 of the paste, and pulse the remaining quarter with a mix of salt, black pepper, paprika, Cayenne pepper flakes, cumin, nutmeg and coriander.
- Combine the new mixture with the chickpeas paste previously set aside.
- Add parsley to the food processor and pulse till finely chopped, then add to the chickpeas in the big bowl.
- In the food processor, finely mix the garlic and onion, then add up to 3 tbsp of flour, and pour the chickpeas over the mixture in the food processor for a final mix. Combine everything, and add in the baking powder. Mix it all in the processor, and finish with hands if necessary.
- Let the paste sit in the fridge for about a half hour.
- Form falafel balls. Roll them into flour, heat oil in a pan and fry your falafels.
- Eat them while still a bit hot, because the crunchiness on the outside of the falafels might fade away if you wait too long before eating. Enjoy!! And don’t forget to dip your falafel in some tasty garlic hummus!
UPDATE / NOVEMBER 2015
Tonight I’ve made a MAJOR discovery while preparing Shabbath dinner. My husband and I were discussing earlier about improving (always more) our favorite recipes, and about making hummus and falafels tonight (again!). All of a sudden, following a short silence and a quick look at each other, we talked in one voice and pronounced the words “fluffier inside” and “crunchier outside”. The fluffy part has been easy to fix, I simply realized that I never put the right amount of baking soda in my falafel mixture (why didn’t I read carefully?). Error corrected.
Since we already established long time ago by now that the general flavor and spice level of the right falafel were dictated by the perfect recipe from my blogging friend Falafelinlove, at home we’ve made it our evening duty to try out little improvements in order to meet the desired crunchiness. And then only we set the table and had the perfect dinner (that’s the picture right above, yum!!).
Long trials short, I’ve ended up coating my falafels with thin breadcrumbs. I even think that’s the way they do it in Israel, but boy, I’ve never seen a recipe in which this idea is even mentioned. I’m almost beginning to think that chefs, cooks and bloggers voluntarily omit to tell their tips and tricks to keep this recipe’s important detail a classified secret. Or… I’m myself going the wrong way and I’ll probably be told anytime soon hopefully. :)
How to make the proper coating? The technique is the same as for coating veal, turkey or chicken to makeSchnitzel. Whisk an egg in a small bowl, spread a bit of flour in a small plate, and breadcrumbs in another plate. When the frying oil is heated in your deep bottom pan, roll a falafel ball into the flour, then quickly dip it in the eggwash, and thoroughly roll it into the breadcrumbs. Deep fry it in the pan, taking care to spin it over a few times and to make sure it’s turning equally golden on all sides.
Of course, you’ll enjoy these crunchy and delicious falafels with homemade hummus, won’t you?!
Bon Appétit !
Created and Written by Sophie Rebibo-Halimi. © 2015, All Rights Reserved.