What is falafel and how to cook it at home
National dishes from different countries actively replenish the cookbooks of good housewives. One of the oriental dishes that every family will surely enjoy is falafel. In the article I will tell you what falafel is, how to cook it from chickpeas, consider varieties and calories.
Falafel - what is it?
The dish with the unusual name "falafel" is very popular in Israel and in all Arab countries. It is a fried chickpea balls with seasonings.
According to ancient legend, chickpea balls were first served in Israel during strict fasting to replace meat. For many years, he fell in love so much that he became not just a national dish, but a kind of symbol of the state. Every tourist is obliged to try it, because so versatile treats are loved by both wealthy businessmen and ordinary students.
Useful advice before cooking
The main ingredient in classic falafel is chickpeas. To maximize its useful properties, you can replace the traditional cooking method - frying in oil, with a simpler method - baking in the oven. It is enough to grease the pan with olive oil, put the chickpeas and bake for half an hour.
How to cook classic chickpea falafel
The streets of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv can not be imagined without the flavors of falafel. The main ingredient is chickpeas. It is consumed after soaking and raw. Chickpeas - a bean plant whose oily fruits have a pleasant nutty flavor.
Everyone who decides to cook a dish for the first time at home should master the classic recipe, which will become the basis for further experiments.
A few concepts you need to know before learning cooking skills:
- Bulgur - crushed wheat groats brewed with boiling water.
- Tahina Pasta used for hummus. The composition includes sesame seeds, water, spices and salt. Finely chopped garlic and lemon juice are added for the perfect tahini sauce.
IngredientsServings: - + 8
In classic falafel, chickpeas are not cooked, but soaked in cold water for at least 4 hours. It’s better to soak it all night, then by morning it will drink enough liquid.
- chickpeas 250 g
- water 1 l
- Bulgur 3 tbsp. l
- wheat flour 4 tbsp. l
- onion 1 pc
- 5 tooth garlic.
- cumin 3 tbsp. l
- coriander 1 tbsp. l
- soda 1 tsp
- salt 1 tsp
- ground black pepper ½ tsp
- ground cayenne pepper ½ tsp
- curry 1 tsp
- sunflower oil 200 ml
- parsley 10 g
- cilantro 5 g
- cardamom 5 g
- Peas are ground into a homogeneous puree mass in a blender or food processor. Onions and herbs finely crumble. Garlic is pressed through a garlic press or grated.
- In a deep bowl, place chickpeas, bulgur, onions, herbs, garlic, add cumin, pepper, coriander, curry, to taste salt and pepper. Stir vigorously, pour 3 tablespoons of water and mix well again.
- From the resulting mass we form balls. So that the mixture does not stick to your hands, moisten them with water. Get about 18 pieces.
- Pour oil into a deep pan. On a well-heated skillet, put the falafel so that it does not touch each other. The balls will be ready in 3-4 minutes of frying over medium heat.
- When the balls are covered with a golden crust, put them on a paper towel to remove excess fat.
It is served hot together with a light vegetable salad, heated with pita, olives, tahini or hummus.
In Israel, falafel is spread in pita and poured with tahini sauce, served with a salad of fresh cucumbers, tomatoes and radishes.
Falafel with hummus
Hummus - a traditional oriental appetizer made from chickpeas puree, in which olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, paprika, sesame paste - tahini are added.
Falafel cooked according to a traditional recipe will gain a new taste thanks to hummus. To make hummus paste you will need boiled chickpeas, sesame paste, garlic, juice of half a lemon, olive oil, salt and spices to taste. The ingredients are mixed into a homogeneous mass. She greases a bun or pita bread.
Delicious Falafel Recipe in Pita Bread
Syrians are very popular falafel in pita bread. The dish is very satisfying, inexpensive and does not require much time for cooking. In the cities of eastern countries, it is cooked right in front of customers. The recipe in pita bread has similarities with the famous shawarma - a kind of oriental fast food. However, unlike the popular fast food, it is not harmful, but healthy and nutritious. It goes well with both a glass of beer and your favorite juice.
After reading about the merits of dishes in pita bread, everyone probably wanted to cook it at home. It is easy!Ingredients:
- falafel (according to the first recipe);
- fresh or pickles;
- a tomato;
- parsley, basil, mint;
- bell pepper;
- sour cream / mayonnaise;
- We prepare vegetables - we cut cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers and greens with thin strips. We spread pita bread with a thin layer of sour cream or mayonnaise.
- You can cook a delicious sauce by mixing in equal proportions sour cream with mayonnaise.
- On pita bread we carefully lay out vegetables, herbs and, of course, falafel, which can be crushed a little.
- From above everything is watered with hummus, you can add a little sesame paste.
- It remains to curtail the resulting creation, like a shawarma, with a tube.
Simple lentil recipe
Falafel will not lose useful qualities if you replace the main component - chickpeas, with no less nutritious lentils. The difference between lentils is that it is less soft and crumbly, and the balls come out denser, hold their shape better.Ingredients:
- 400-500 gr. lentils;
- 100 gr. Luke;
- greens (parsley, cilantro);
- 5-6 cloves of garlic;
- 1 tsp coriander;
- 1 tsp caraway seeds;
- 1 tbsp. l olive oil;
- juice of half a lemon;
- 2 tbsp. l flour;
- salt, red and black pepper to taste.
- Soak lentils overnight, and boil for half an hour in the morning, cool and grind in a blender until smooth.
- Add the flour, spices, olive oil to the lentils and mix again until smoothie consistency.
- From the mass, mold balls or small patties, put on a preheated pan and fry until golden brown.
You can't call traditional falafel dietary. Chickpeas are high in easily digestible protein. For this quality he is especially loved in hot countries. Nutritional value per 100 grams:
- proteins - 13.9 g;
- fats - 4.8 g;
- carbohydrates - 43.3 g.
This is a lot, so you should not eat it for dinner. For lunch or lunch - a great option that will provide energy and perfectly satisfy the feeling of hunger.