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Health, Home, and Happiness: Falafel with tahini sauce

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Falafel with tahini sauce

It might be a first, but I actually followed the recipe for this. Falafel on page 506 of Nourishing Traditions, tahini sauce on page 148.

We plan on making this a regular part of our menu now, it was liked by everyone. We generally do the bulk of our cooking on Tuesdays, a couple dinners and bread if we need to, so that the rest of the week is free for sewing, errands, and park visits. We were planning on making just the falafel mixture, but then Hannah and I decided to try it for snack and it was so good that we just had to have it for dinner that night. Didn't quite get to the soaked wheat pita bread this week, we just ate it with the suggested tahini sauce and ginger carrots for Hannah and I, sauerkraut for Hubby.

I had made falafel last summer, but with a different recipe and I didn't soak the garbanzo beans as called for in Nourishing Traditions. We liked it last time, but this time was even better.

To soak, I boiled a pot of water, added the dried garbanzo beans (chickpeas) and added a few tablespoons of whey (lemon juice is okay too), covered, and left to sit overnight, drained, then repeated the process and let sit until the afternoon. Next we processed the garbanzo beans and spices in batches in the food processor. Not much to look, it looks like moist sand, the kind that you can make really good footprints in when you walk along the shore.

I love Nourishing Traditions, but sometimes I wish there was a little more detail in the recipes. Like how to shape the patties, how long to cook, etc. I found that thinner small patties work best to cook through and for ease of flipping. Maybe those who have actually had falafel by people who knew what they were doing could share the normal size?

falafel spices: parsley, cumin, coriander, pepper, sea salt, cayenne pepper, baking powder (I know, I thought it was strange too, but it worked)

I used the sunflower oil that I had on hand to fry in since it has a high heat point. I still ended up filling the down stairs with smoke, as I seem to do at least once a month. Don't forget to turn off the burner after you finish frying the patties up -grin-

A very filling meatless meal. Rounding numbers, $1.50 for the dried chickpeas, $0.50 for the spices, $1.00 for the oil; this meal comes to well under $5 with the tahini sauce and fed the 3 of us including one with a huge appetite, with leftovers.

Tahini sauce is 2 cloves garlic, 1 tsp sea salt, 1/2 cup tahini, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice, all processed in the food processor until the consitency of heavy cream. Tahini (sesame seed paste) is a little pricey, but this sauce is rich and flavorful and will last quite a while. It took me a few trips to different stores before I could find the tahini, but one of our health food stores had it with the other nut butters. It was $4.35 and one jar would make a couple batches of this sauce. I've used it in hummus before too.

This post is a part of Pennywise Platters Thursdays and Real Food Wednesdays

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Anonymous Jen said...

I've had falafel in restaurants, and they were shaped in small balls. Like medium sized meatballs. They were probably deep fried. I say if they tasted good, who cares what they look like! :)

My husband loves falafel, so I'll be giving this a try.

July 22, 2009 at 8:49 AM  
Blogger Alyss said...

It's fun to follow a recipe every once in a while, isn't it? :) I've also had ball shaped falafels before but seen recipes for them to be anywhere from golf ball to hamburger patty sized. I think it's up to you and how you are going to eat them. Smaller would do better in a pita, larger if you were going to top a salad.

Have you ever used expeller pressed coconut oil to fry with? That's what I do almost all my pan frying with and love it. No coconutty flavor and a good high smoke point. No nasty polyunsaturated fatty acids either! :)

July 22, 2009 at 2:42 PM  
Blogger Millie said...

I am pleased to have found you at RFW. I have the Falafel on my menu to make for Sunday. I am glad to hear that you all liked it.

July 22, 2009 at 6:21 PM  
Blogger Cara said...

I've used coconut oil for frying, and you're right about the polyunsaturates. Just didn't have any coconut oil around. At least it's not GMO canola ;)

I see falafel comes in all shapes and sizes!

Thanks for visiting

July 23, 2009 at 6:14 AM  
Anonymous Kimi @ The Nourishing Gourmet said...

I love falafel, so good. I made that same recipe for Elena's first birthday and everyone loved it. :-) Thanks for sharing!

July 23, 2009 at 11:08 AM  

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