Now that the weather has started heating up, I’ve been on the lookout for easier recipes that I can serve with salad. I’ve never had falafel before, but I’ve heard some really good things and the images from this recipe look incredible. Although falafel is usually served with pita, you can skip it for a healthier and fresher feel. This is a recipe that would be great for early dinners or a packed lunch for work. Heather, of Flourishing Foodie, recommends using dry chickpeas that you’ve soaked for 24 hours over canned ones (dried chickpeas will give your falafel a nice crunch all the way through, and canned ones will be softer).
Read below the cut for the recipe and to see some more mouth-watering images!
FALAFEL SALAD RECIPE (print)
makes 16 falafels
salad serves 4
notes: It is important to buy dried chickpeas and soak them for at least 24 hours. Substituting for canned chickpeas will change the texture of the falafels. The uncooked/soaked chickpeas will give the falafel a nice crunch, whereas the canned ones will give the falafel a softer texture.
1 3/4 cups dry chickpeas, soaked overnight
2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 small handful of parsley, chopped and stems removed
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander seeds, ground
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp lemon juice, or 1 small lemon
1/4 – 1/2 cup water
2 tbsp all-purpose flour (enough to slightly hold the mixture together)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup sesame seeds
vegetable oil for frying
DRESSING INGREDIENTS (makes a little more than 1/2 cup)
1/4 cup oil (canola, olive, safflower, or grapeseed)
2 tbsp lemon juice or 1 small lemon
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
dash of salt
8 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cucumber, sliced
1/2 onion, sliced
2 tbsp capers, drained
In the food processor or blender, pulse half of the chickpeas until they are broken into smaller pieces. Place into a large bowl.
Place the rest of the chickpeas into the food processor with the garlic, onion, parsley, cumin, coriander, cayenne, baking soda, salt, lemon juice and water. Pulse until it resemble a paste. Add to the large bowl with the chickpea pieces. Stir in the flour, egg, and sesame seeds.
Scoop a rough 1/4 cup of the falafel mixture and roll into a ball. Place onto the parchment paper. Continue in this manner until you have rolled all of the falafel balls. Place the baking sheet into the fridge and let sit for 1 hour. Some of the water will seep out onto the tray, this is normal.
Add the vegetable oil to a large frying pan, and heat on medium. You want enough oil to cover half of the falafel while frying.
Remove the falafels from the fridge. Carefully slide with a spoon, 5 or 6 falafels at a time into the oil. Do not drop them into the oil or they will fall apart. Fry for a couple of minutes on each side or until the falafel has turned a medium shade of brown. Remove from the oil and place onto a paper towel. If the oil is too hot, the falafels will cook on the outside way quicker than on the inside. I would recommend frying one falafel first and then adjust the temp accordingly. Also, it’s worth noting that the oil will cool slightly after frying the first batch.
In a mason jar or any jar with a lid, add all of the dressing ingredients. Shake until combined.
To assemble the salad, add the lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, onion and capers to a plate. Place a few falafels on top and drizzle with the dressing.
I’m excited to try out this recipe, even though I’m not keen on the frying process. If you have any tips to cook them differently, let me know in the comments! Eating healthy is one of the ways that I like to style my life – feeling good on the inside will reflect on the space around you. When you eat unhealthy food, it’s tempting to just leave messy areas alone because you’re not feeling your greatest. I always like my home the best when I’ve been eating healthier!