Monday, March 26, 2012


Copyright 2012 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
A falafel sandwich meal is one of my favorite lunch meals when I worked at Emory a few years ago. There is this falafel place across the street from the Physics building that served falafel on a pita bread. Since the owners were Japanese, they also served sushi and various dumplings to go with your falafel meal. It was an alternative to the shawarma sandwich I used to eat a lot of. I got hooked once I had my first taste and it was always a toss-up on whether I should go for the shawarma or the falafel for lunch. 

I have been meaning to make this dish for some time now but I just needed the right time to serve it. This weekend seemed like the perfect occasion since I also made the Moorish Beef Kebabs. The falafel will serve as an alternative main dish for my vegan friends. If my memory serves me right, the falafel sandwich came with a white sauce and upon searching for a recipe, I came up with a non-dairy version of the tzatziki sauce. The recipe for the falafel is from Fayed Saad at while the accompanying tzatziki sauce is from Alton Brown's at the Food Network Channels.

Falafel - Adapted*

1 15-oz can chickpeas, canned
1 onion, grated
3 tbsp flour
salt and pepper
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
canola oil for frying

1. Drain the chickpeas and mash until smooth. Add the rest of the 
    ingredients and season with salt and pepper. Cover with clingfilm and set 
    aside in the fridge for about an hour. 

2. Place the falafel mix in the freezer about 5 minutes before frying. Heat 
    the oil in a frying pan over medium high heat.

3. Take pingpong ball-sized rounds of the mixture and flatten a little bit 
    before dropping into the hot oil. Fry until browned. Flip the falafel and 
    lower the heat to medium. Cook until browned. 

The falafel should be crispy on the outside but still soft inside so you have to cook it a bit darker than the usual golden brown stage. Be careful not to go overboard or you will end up with a dry falafel. If you have to fry in batches, remember to bring up the heat of the oil for each batch back to high heat. These brown nuggets are best eaten dipped in a cold tzatziki sauce.

Copyright 2012 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
Tzatziki Sauce - Adapted**

12 oz Tofutti Sour Cream
1 cucumber
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp sugar
4 garlic cloves, finely 
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp parsely leaves, 

1. Peel and deseed the 
    cucumber. Dice finely and set aside in a bowl. 

2. Combine the rest of the ingredients in the bowl with the cucumber and 
    mix well. Adjust the flavor with the salt. It should have a good balance 
    between salty, sour and sweet.  

3. Set aside in the fridge until ready to use. 

*Fayed, Saad,
**Brown, Alton, Good Eats, Food Network Channels, My Big Fat Greek Sandwich episode: 2005. 

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