I’ve been making falafel for a long time, always deep frying in oil, but it’s only been during the last 6 months that I’ve thought about a healthier way to serve them. So I’ve tweaked my old recipe to both make them healthier but, at the same time, tastier.
These are so easy to make and stay lovely and moist, even when eaten cold. I like to serve mine in a wholewheat pitta or wrap with lots of salad and a dressing made with tahini, lemon juice and soy sauce. A spicy kick from a whole red chilli, floral perfume of lemon zest, spices and herbs, a touch of savoury sweetness from medjool dates and a crunchy crust of sesame seeds makes these the perfect little mouthful.
They’re also oil and gluten free!
– 1 can of chickpeas, drained
– 1/3 of a red onion, chopped
– 1/2 heaped tsp ground cumin
– 1/2 heaped tsp ground coriander
– 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
– 1 large red chilli, deseeded and chopped
– 2 medjool dates, chopped
– Zest of a lemon
– 1 handful of chopped coriander
– 1 handful of chopped flat leaf parsley
– 1 tsp tahini
– 1 tsp flaked sea salt (I use Maldon)
– 3 tbsp sesame seeds for coating
Makes 13 falafel
Preheat your oven to 200ºc (Fan 190ºc).
Tip the chickpeas into a food processor and give them a good blitz. This makes the process a lot easier. Add the remaining ingredients and blitz until you reach a paste consistency which still has a little texture. You still want to see flecks of herbs and chilli in there. I find stopping my mixer regularly to push down the mix with a spatula is necessary to get a nice even mix, but it won’t take long.
Place the sesame seeds into a small bowl. Now take a dessert spoon and scoop out walnut size amounts of mix, roll into balls and drop them one at a time into the bowl of sesame seeds, evenly coating them. There should be just enough seeds to coat all the falafel.
Now place the falafel on a lined baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool ever so slightly if you can resist the urge to dive straight in (they’ll firm up a touch).
Stuff into salad filled pittas with toppings of your choice.