Falafel is a respected dish made of a mixture of chickpeas, fresh herbs, and spices formed into small ball-like patties. Falafel originated in Egypt as Christians looked for a replacement for meat during long seasons of fasting. Now, Falafel has become a popular vegan food in Egypt and throughout the Middle East.
Our falafel recipe brings back the culture and proves tasty. There are plenty of variations when it comes to making falafel, so please share with us your different combinations! Read our easy to follow instructions below.
How To Serve Falafel
Falafel is served on a plate with hummus, salad, pita bread, or any other accompaniments you may desire. Most falafel establishments will serve you Falafel with hummus on the side. You can also request extra pita bread. What is Falafel made out of? Falafel is traditionally made from chickpeas, fresh herbs, and spices.
What Does Falafel Taste Like?
Falafel consists of lots of ingredients including herbs and spices. Many would describe the taste of falafel to be rich, grainy, and savory. It may sound strange that a food with such a strong resemblance to the Hebrew word for freedom could be good. Still, Falafel, especially in Israel and Palestine, has an exceptional taste, texture, and aroma that stand out amongst other food. In the Middle East, Falafel is sometimes sold by street vendors, which is why it’s so popular – it’s usually piping hot, fresh, and crispy. Some prefer it with pickled turnip and parsley, which gives the Falafel a smoky taste.
Is Falafel Healthy?
Falafel is one of the healthiest foods you can eat because of the high nutrient density of the falafel balls and leaves. It is high in protein and is a good source of iron, zinc, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium, vitamin A, B6, and B12.
Though the patties themselves are very high in protein, that doesn’t make up for the high-calorie content. Falafel patties range from 300 to nearly 1,000 calories depending on the style you choose. In addition, falafel patties have a large amount of fat, and most falafel burgers are made with white bread rather than whole grain. For the patties to be perfect, the Falafel has to be baked, not fried.
As mentioned above, falafel patties are primarily chickpeas. Chickpeas contain high levels of carbohydrates and have a high glycemic index. If you eat a lot of falafels, you can be excitable and more likely to overeat. However, your blood sugar levels may increase quickly due to the higher number of carbs in falafel patties.
Is Falafel Israeli or Arab?
Falafel, along with hummus and shawarma, are both. Israel is home to the oldest Jewish community in the world (9500 years of Israel, and there are still Jews there). Falafel comes from Egypt, where the dish was initially born.
Falafel and fattoush are very similar in that they are made with fried balls of chickpeas and rice, and they both have various spices added to them. They are often served together at falafel restaurants. While Falafel is made with ground chickpeas, fattoush is made with bulgur or flatbread and is often served in a lettuce wrap.
- 2 cups dried chickpeas
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 cup fresh parsley leaves
- ¾ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- ½ cup fresh dill
- 8 garlic cloves peeled
- salt to taste
- 1 tbsp ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
- oil for frying
- Tahini Sauce
- pita bread
- cucumbers chopped
- tomatoes diced
- baby arugula
- Soak chickpeas placed in baking soda in a bowl with water 2" above the chickpeas. Soak over night for 12 hours.
- Pat chickpeas dry, and add onions, garlic, spices and herbs to a food processor. Process for 40 seconds until the ingredients are well combined.
- Place falafel mixture to a container and cover tightly, refrigerate for at least 1 hour until ready to cook.
- Add baking powder and sesame seeds to the mixture and stir with a spoon.
- Scoop falafel mixture and form into patties. Wet to stick.
- Fill a saucepan with 2.5" inches with oil. Heat on medium-high until bubbles. Carefully drop falafel patties in the oil and fry for 5 minutes.
- Place the fried falafel patties on paper towels to drain.
- Serve falafel with pita bread, tahini, tomato, and other sides.
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