A healthy and most delicious replacement to the Aloo tikkis is the Mediterranean Falafel.
Aroma of Mediterranean flavours and spices outline the character of this falafel recipe. There would be a very few of us who’d have not given into the Med food buzz that seems to be spreading wide in our country.
So are we done with the pizzas and pastas or noodles? Nay, trust it’s actually about more the better that has led these new med food outlets mushrooming, or am I undermining the power of the Med flavours. Trust we are evolving as foodies, starting to experiment, adapt and accept in terms of tastes and flavours. We’ve become more tolerant towards all things new, and that holds true in terms of food too. Why otherwise would so many new small Med restaurant chain mushroom across our cities, I am talking of the kinds of Just Falafel or Al Zaitoon that’s been widely accepted and appreciated. Infact most new food courts are no more limited to pizza, burger, Indian or Chinese counters, but we now also have, Thai, Japanese, Arabic, Lebanese etc, a variety that’s exciting.
Ok so Falafels are one of the most widely accepted fare from the Med offering and why not, these cutlet like snack has everything that we Indian love to gorge on. It is aromatic, spicy, crunchy, quick and deep fried, WOW. I say they are quite capable of replacing the pakodas in the Modern Indian kitchen. Besides the taste is not too alien to us too for it has the texture of our South Indian Daal Vadas and has all familiar spices, the coriander, cumin, chillies, cinnamon, nutmeg etc. I’ve given out much already and the rest you’ll find in the recipe below.
Ps- They don’t just make a great snack on their own with a dip of your choice (Best is the Tahini Dip though) but are a healthier replacement to the patties in the burgers too.
Ingredients (Makes 12 med size Falafels, Serves -4):
- 1 cup Chickpeas (Choley), soaked overnight, makes aprox 1 & ½ cups soaked Chickpeas.
- 3-4 cloves of Garlic, chopped
- 2 med pring onion, chopped along with the green
- ¼ cup fresh Coriander, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh Parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp Cumin Pwd
- 1 & ½ tsp Coriander pwd
- ½ tsp Black Pepper pwd
- 2 pinch of Cinnamon pwd
- 2 pinch of Nutmeg pwd
- ½ tsp All Spice pwd, optional
- ½ tsp red chilli flakes or pwd
- 1 tbsp plain flour (maida)
- Oil to fry (Olive oil preferably)
- Salt to taste
- Just par boil the soaked Chickpeas with a little salt, about 10 mins. Drain and blend in the food processor, just one or two whizz to just crush the chickpeas.
- Then add chopped spring onions and garlic and give it another one rot two whizz to get grainy and coarse mixture. Do not add any extra water.
- Strain it out into a mixing bowl, tip in the chopped coriander leaves and parsley and mix well with your hand or an spatula.
- Add All the spices and salt to taste and mix well. Finally tip in the flour and just a little sprinkle of water (not more than a tbsp) to make the mixture hold together.
- Divide the mixture into 10-12 parts and shape them into a shape to patty and keep aside.
- Heat enough oil in a wok and test the oil by dropping a small ball of mixture and if almost immediately comes on the surface the oil is ready. Fry the falafel on a medium heat until golden and crispy on all sides, flipping turning continuously, strain on a kitchen tissue roll and serve with yogurt dip or better still the tahini dip (find the recipe here, it is simple and quick).
Dos and Don’ts:
- Make sure the oil is hot enough before dropping in the falafel, and then reduce the heat to medium.
- You may either use egg or flour as a binder, just one egg would be fine.