Falafel time!

In my quest for making some ‘tastes of home’ I decided I needed some falafel.  While not traditional Texas fare, we ate it at my home ha ha.  All the ingredients are readily available here in Iloilo.  Your mileage may vary.  I have not seen dry chickpeas, but canned are easy enough to find at all our grocers (chickpeas & garbanzos are the same thing, just depends on what you grew up calling them). Our local Sikh temple does have chickpea flour, so they may have dry beans as well. I am lazy and prefer canned, so I have not looked. Actually in the US I used a falafel mix – just add water.  I was really lazy, and it was sold everywhere. Here I had to figure out out to actually make it!  I bought the chickpeas originally to make some hummus, but as I looked at the can I decided I liked falafel better.

The falafel seems like it turns out a little doughy. The falafel I am used to is more bready. I suspect that is because I am using a blender instead of a food processor. It is difficult to get the right consistency.  I left all my kitchen electrical appliances in the US. Not sure how long the 110 volt stuff would have worked here… but it would have been nice.  I really miss my food processor and my Vita-Mix.  (I have been told to use a potato masher if using canned – I have not tried it yet)

I could not find anything to make tahini sauce with – but as I am not a big fan of tahini I did not look very hard for sesame paste.  My wife said she likes the falafel, so that is a plus.



falafel 3

  • 425 gr. can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • ½  tsp paprika
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Oil for frying

Optional: 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves in recipe.

1. Put all ingredients in a food processor, or blender. The food processor is recommended but a blender will suffice. Process until thoroughly chopped and blended – but not pureed. It should be a little smoother than couscous, but you are not making hummus! You will need to stop periodically and scrape it down into the blades. This is more of a problem with a blender, the blades are not shaped right for this.  (I have been told to use a potato masher if using canned – I have not tried it yet)
2. Form 8 patties, or balls.
3. Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan, add the falafel. Fry for 3 min. on each side until lightly golden. You can pan fry or deep fry them.
Note: In the Philippines fresh cilantro is called ‘wansoy’. Do not let them substitute ‘kinchay’, it is not the same – no matter what they say. Garnish with chopped tomato, diced onions, and/or bell pepper. A yogurt or tahini dipping sauce is nice. If you can find pita bread, falafel makes great sandwiches. For sandwiches, patties work better. Either balls or patties if used as a side dish.

Mixing time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Makes 8 small patties

falafel 1      falafel 2     wansoy     falafel 4



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