Tag Archives: chickpea flour

Fantastic Falafel

I talk to myself when I’m driving. Here’s what I said to myself on my drive home from work: What will I have for dinner? Hmm. There’s eggplant in the fridge. And there’s tahini. I can make baba ghanouj. But then I have to pick up pita bread. Oooh! Falafel! I’ll make falafel!

And so I did.

I tried making falafel once before, and I was also recently very intrigued by Christie and Brent’s Pakora. I really wanted something simple and fried — been craving fried stuff lately — so I decided to try improving on the recipe I used before, which was straight from the good folks at Bob’s Red Mill.

Melissa’s Fantastic Falafel (that’s not too braggy, right?)

1 cup garbanzo bean flour
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin (I added a hefty 1/2 tsp)
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
1 tsp fresh cilantro, minced
2  garlic cloves, minced
1/3 to 1/2 cup hot water
oil for frying

I put all my dry and fresh ingredients into a bowl.

I added the water, mixed it all together, and this lovely ball of dough formed. After my traumatizing baking experience over the weekend, I was cautious with adding the water, and found that 1/3 cup was the perfect amount I needed (probably due to how I measured the flour).

I wanted the dough to sit for awhile so the flavors could meld together, so while it was chillin’ like a villain, I made my baba ghanouj.

Melissa’s Baba Ghanouj for People Who Live Alone

1 eggplant, roasted and skinned, but keep the skins on if you want
1 garlic clove
1 tbsp tahini
1tsp lemon juice
fresh parsely leaves from 3 sprigs or so

Stick all that stuff in a food processor. Tip – you might want to mince the garlic. I didn’t. You may also want to cut down on the garlic. Let me just say that I have kickass breath right now. Hhhaaahhhhh. See?! That, along with the fact that this only serves one, is why I named the recipe the way I did.

Going back to my falafel dough, I formed some falafel balls, rolled them in some sesame seeds, and then fried them until they were golden brown — about 2 -3 minutes on each side turning 3 times for luck. These look fine but were kind of a fail: my intention was to make falafel ‘bites’ so I should have formed smaller balls. *pause for laughter* Tip: You can bake instead of fry if you wish.

Oh hi! It’s my face! If you had been here after I took this first bite, you would have heard me exclaim a bunch of “OH MY GOD”s. Finally: falafel that I can be proud of! It is 300% better than my last attempt. If my favorite falafel place ever closes, I won’t cry because I know I can make some that are just as tasty.

Happy happy happy! –Melissa

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Pakora: chickpea fritters… basically.

Brent and I decided to try and recreate another of our favorite take-out dishes last night. This one was not quite as successful as our <a href=”http://turningveganese.com/2012/03/20/tofu-mahkani-quick-and-easy/”>previous endeavors</a> but we learned a lot so it’s okay. We were interested in making pakora so with some inspiration from <a href=”http://ellesite.wordpress.com/2012/03/20/guilt-free-pakora-vegan-indian-food-made-healthy/>Elle’s Diary</a> we decided to craft our own and bake them instead of traditional frying.

First I shredded 5 medium carrots and a large zucchini in my food processor. I added the folloring:
2 cups chickpea flour
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp gram masala blended spices
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp Earth Balance vegan butter
soy milk

We mixed it together with the shredded veggies and added soy milk until the texture was like a thick batter. I spooned them onto a wax paper lined baking sheet. We baked them at 350C/180F until they began to brown at the edges and were firm to the touch, about 35 minutes.

While we were waiting, my handsome partner in criminally fun cooking prepared two sauces for dipping: mint chutney and tamarind. For the tamarind he combined:
maple syrup
thawed frozen tamarind
chili paste

For the mint chutney, he put the following in the food processor:

1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 1/2 cups fresh mint leaves
1 jalapeño pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 medium onion, cut into chunks
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup water, or as needed
 
The dipping sauces were an enormous success. The pakora on the other hand, needed some work. I think the next time we make this dish we’ll add a shredded onion and maybe a potato or eggplant to the veggie mix. We’ll also add a little baking soda and use a cast iron skillet to bake them since sticking to the wax paper lined baking sheet was a problem. The flavors, however, were good and this high protein addition to a traditional Indian meal will be welcome even before we work out the kinks. We’ll be revisiting this particular awesome dish again and we’ll keep you posted.
This is Brent and Christie, signing off!
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