Eating on Purpose

My attempt to eat less and pay more.

Baked Falafel

with 5 comments

One of my favorite meals in the world is falafel. While it’s not the healthiest thing I make, I reassure myself it could be worse: Sure, it’s fried in oil, but it’s made with beans, and that’s good for you, right? And hey, it’s a great way to cook a meatless meal, something I try to do several times a week.

Baked falafel

About once a month I get a serious craving for it. To assuage my guilt over the whole deep-frying thing, this time I decided to try a no-breadcrumb, no-egg, no-fried, baked version. I reasoned that it was the chickpeas and yummy spices I was craving, anyways.

The verdict? Pretty good, for no-breadcrumb, no-egg, no-fried, chickpea patties (I’m hesitant to call the results of this recipe falafel). If you’re avoiding egg, oil, and bread, this is definitely a keeper.

The falafel were quite tasty, but pretty dry, and fell apart easily. I like that little bit of crunch on the outside of the falafel, which these are definitely missing.

I wondered whether it was the actual frying that made the difference, so halfway through the baking process, I modified the remaining mix. I added an egg and some fine breadcrumbs. Slightly better, but still missing that nice crunchy texture. They did hold together better though.

Baked Falafel Recipe

This is loosely based on a recipe from Tosca Reno’s Eat-Clean Diet website, something I’ve become interested in lately. We bought the Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook, and I’ll be sharing some ideas from that book in another post.

  • 2 cans chickpeas
  • 6 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 minced onion
  • 2 TBSP lemon juice
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • salt & pepper to taste (I used 1 tsp salt and a few grinds of pepper)

How to make:

Drain chickpeas, and mash with a fork until mostly smushed (what’s the technical term for that?). Add onions, lemon juice, olive oil and spices. Form into small balls and flatten onto greased cookie sheet. Bake for around 20 minutes at 375 degrees. If you want a golden brown on both sides, you’ll need to flip them halfway. But be careful, they’re fragile!

Serve warm in pita shells or whole-wheat tortillas with chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, and tsatziki.

Fried Falafel: Still the Tastiest

While I will probably continue fiddling with the baked falafel recipe and use that as my staple recipe, I’m sure I’ll still use this original, fried-falafel recipe from time-to-time as a treat.

  • 1 19 oz can chickpeas
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 3/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp parsley
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • 1 cup fine dry bread crumbs
  • 2 large eggs

How to Make:

Run chickpeas and onion through food processor. Add next ingredients, and mix well. Shape into 1 inch balls, then flatten into patties. Lower patties into hot cooking oil using slotted spoon. Cook about 45 seconds or until desired shade of brown.

Serve warm in pita shells with peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, feta, greek dressing, hummus and tsatziki.

Fried falafel freeze wonderfully, so you can make a whole bunch and pull them out as needed. Yuummmm.

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Written by hollyck1

August 3, 2010 at 2:45 am

Posted in Recipes

5 Responses

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  1. I’ve never had falafels before, but then I didn’t even know what they were, besides something fried. I’ll have to try this out, as well as other recipes here on your site.

    I’ve been trying to eat clean as much as possible, too. It’s a good thing! 🙂

    margopego

    August 3, 2010 at 3:37 am

    • Michelle, you HAVE to try them!!! My life wasn’t complete until I tried falafel 😉

      hollyck1

      August 3, 2010 at 4:30 pm

      • Thanks! I will, especially now that you’ve posted a recipe here. 🙂

        margopego

        August 3, 2010 at 5:36 pm

  2. Oh, that sounds really good! My parents have timeshares in Fairmont Hot Springs every year, and there’s a fabulous Greek roadside stand nearby. I’ve had falafal there many times, but have never tried to recreate it. I think I’ll have to try your recipe! 🙂

    Heidi McMaster

    August 3, 2010 at 5:06 am

    • Heidi, they’re so easy to make, and such a nice break from meat sometimes!

      hollyck1

      August 3, 2010 at 4:28 pm


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