Have the pita ready. June 12 is World Falafel Day(International Falafel Day). A dish that is not only greedy, but also healthy and simple. Here’s how to party.
Time falafel. A meatball that has many advantages: a vegan soul, a Middle Eastern wrapper and a strong sense of health. June 12 is World Falafel Day, a dish much loved in the East, which is why, on closer inspection, the celebrations are certainly moved further east, on the globe. A site is also dedicated to the event, which maps where to find the tastiest excellences. If the geographical factor doesn’t help, the network has launched the hashtag #falafelday and someone is already exchanging recipes on their Facebook page.
International Falafel Day – Falafel Recipe
Here’s how to prepare chickpea felafel at home, an easy and tasty dish also suitable as an appetizer or for a quick dinner.
The falafel are a typical dish of the Middle Eastern tradition, in both the Arabic cuisine that the Israeli cuisine , of which, however, speculates Egyptian origin. These are croquettes for the preparation of which the basic ingredient is usually represented by legumes. In the preparation of falafel, chickpeas or broad beans are mainly used .
The use of dried legumes is required , which are left to soak so that they can soften, so that they can be blended together with the other ingredients that are used for the preparation of falafel. The chickpea falafel, of which we propose the recipe below, are excellent especially if enjoyed freshly made, but can also be served cold.
Falafel can be chosen as a dish to be included in a menu for a home aperitif, but also as an appetizer or second course, accompanied by a salad or seasonal vegetables. The chickpea falafel can also be used as a filling for pita (a soft Arabic bread), alone or accompanied by seasonal vegetables.
There is a particular sauce that is traditionally served in countries where falafel is a typical dish, as their perfect accompaniment. This is the thain sauce (also called thaina or thaini). Thain is a sesame seed-based sauce that is readily available in organic or ethnic stores. Thain sauce can also be made at home by blending sesame seeds with cold-pressed sesame or sunflower oil .
Here are all the ingredients necessary for the homemade preparation of chickpea falafel and the related procedure.
- 250 grams of dried chickpeas
- 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley
- Chickpea flour or breadcrumbs
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove of garlic
- ½ teaspoon of cumin powder
- ½ onion
- Salt and pepper
To prepare falafel starting from dried chickpeas it will be necessary to soak them in water for 24 hours. The soaking water must be replaced after 12 hours. Remember that you do not have to cook the chickpeas before making the croquettes. In fact, to form falafel it is necessary to start from raw chickpeas.
Once the soaking time has elapsed, the chickpeas must be drained completely and placed in the glass of a kitchen mixer. Inside it must be added the chopped onion, the garlic clove (which you can do without, if you don’t like the taste), parsley, cumin and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
Proceed blending everything until you get a homogeneous mixture . Adjust the flavor with salt and pepper and start forming spherical or flattened croquettes with your hands. Only if the mixture is too soft, add a little bit of breadcrumbs or chickpea flour.
To facilitate the formation of the croquettes and obtain a more compact dough, it is also advisable to let the dough rest in the refrigerator for an hour , before starting to work. Once the chickpea croquettes are formed, it will be necessary to cook them. The traditional recipe for falafel provides for their frying in boiling oil, to be extended until the surface of the croquettes is golden brown.
However, there is an alternative to frying, which will make your chickpea falafel much lighter. This is baking , which can be done without adding fat, except for a little oil to grease the pan, unless you use baking paper. Baking in the oven will last about 20-25 minutes at 180 ° C.
The baked chickpea falafel will be ready when a crisp and golden crust has formed on their surface. They are excellent if accompanied by chickpea hummus or from the room to yogurt.
The properties of these veg meatballs are many: according to the Harvard School of Public Health, we are talking about almost two grams of protein per meatball, in this an excellent substitute for red meat. The Canadian Center for Agri-food Research in Health and Medicine, however, combines proteins with a valid intake of fiber: with three falafels, 26% of the recommended daily dose is reached, a great help in reducing the absorption of cholesterol and sugars.
A search Canadian also confirm that legumes, in particular peas, improve the function of blood vessels, so the falafel are potentially a plate can reduce the risks associated with cardiovascular disease. Of course, in this, frying could send much of what has been said to be blessed, so either you try alternative cooking methods (ie, the oven ), or, at least, you pay attention to using olive oil and not to burn the meatballs. According to experts, this should reduce the guilt, but not the taste.