This is the most authentic recipe for Baked Falafel. Moist, incredibly delicious falafel flavored with cilantro, parsley, green onion and spices. GF & vegan.
Falafel is a traditionally Arab food which has perfectly settled down in the Western world, being a healthy vegan substitute for burgers and French fries. It’s very popular in Arab countries, especially in Egypt where it has been originally made with fava beans. It’s also the most popular fast-food in Israel. They have adopted the dish from Arab cuisine and changed a little, presenting what we all love and enjoy all over the world – chickpeas falafel. Falafel in Israel is almost the same as McDonald’s burgers in the US. Falafel is much lighter, low in fat and cholesterol free healthy and a nourishing meal. What makes it even more popular– stuffed pita pockets and burgers with crunchy spicy and tender falafel make perfect portable fast-food, easy to carry and a quick snack.
Falafel is rich in protein and to make it even healthier and less fat it can be baked instead of deep-fried.
For those who thought that the only way to taste crunchy falafel pita pocket is to buy it from a street vendor, there’s a good news – healthy baked falafel can be your everyday meal easily made at home and served as you wish – with pita, in burgers or with a bowl of salad.
Baked falafel is not just a healthier substitute for a deep-fried version, it’s also easier to make and requires almost no pre-planning or preparation. Moreover, it is as crunchy as fried one. Since it keeps well in the fridge for several days, you can make a big batch and enjoy during the week as a quick and nourishing lunch. Baked falafel tastes good both cold, room temperature or warmed in a microwave or in foil in the oven. It tastes delicious on its own as well as with fresh vegetables or different sauces and hummus.
There are also some things to consider to improve your home-made baked falafel. First, keep in mind that baked falafel patties can dry out a little in the oven and as a result become crumbly. It does not affect the taste, but you may feel like they need more softness in the middle. One option is to add a little flour to the mixture to bind falafel together and a little bit of baking soda that helps to make it less dense. The second option to help patties hold together is to prepare the mixture up to five days beforehand or leave at least overnight before baking. If you don’t want to use flour, just make sure to mix chickpeas more thoroughly than usual, making it more like hummus than just chopped chickpeas.
Soda can also be used to quicken the soaking process when added to the water. But this can result in a soapy taste of the final dish, and soda can neutralize some nutritional acids of the chickpeas. To soak chickpeas both hot and cold water can be used. I prefer boiling water because it helps to soak faster and partially cooks chickpea’s starch resulting in a smoother mixture.
Baked falafel recipe
- Dried chickpeas- 500 gm
- Cilantro( chopped)- ½ cup
- Parsley( chopped) - ½ cup
- Green spring onions ( sliced)-1/ 4 cup
- Garlic cloves- 6-7
- Ground cumin- 1 tbsp
- Ground coriander- 2 tbsp
- Cayenne pepper- 1 tsp
- Salt- to taste
- Olive oil- 3 tbsp ( for brushing falafel before baking)
- FOR SERVING
- Tahina sauce : Combine ½ cup of yogurt with 2 tbsp of Tahina paste
- Pour the boiling water* over the dried chickpeas to cover by 10-14 cm / 5 inch & soak them at least 7-8 hours or overnight.
- In a large bowl combine the drained chickpeas with the cilantro, parsley,garlic, green onions, ground cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper & salt. Mix well. Grind the mixture using a meat grinder*.
- Shape small balls of the chickpea mixture, about 1½ inches each. Flatten them into thick patties.
- Heat the oven to 375°F. Grease a large baking sheet/tray with olive oil . Transfer the falafel on the sheet and brush the tops with the olive oil. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes on each side.
- Remove from oven and use in pita breads with salads, sandwichesm etc. Falafel can be served as a handheld item on a plate with tahina sauce. Refrigerate for a few days or freeze.
* I recommend to use the meat grinder. Using a food processor can result in over-or- under processed unpleasant mixture.
A meat grinder with a 6 mm die, an oven