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Un-fried Falafel

October 12, 2019

Recipe adopted from Forks Over Knives[Recipe makes 4 to 5 servings].

One of our favorite foods to eat is falafel; but to us, frying at home is just not worth it.  Sure, you get a great texture, but the fact that your house will smell like oil for weeks combined with the fact that you're left with a huge amount of oil that should either be disposed of or re-used within a short amount of time, just isn't worth the hassle in our opinion.  Instead, we love to either bake or air fry our falafel.  You still get the same great flavors, just with no mess!

These are great dipped in hummus, served "Buddha bowl style" with rice, tomatoes, olives, red onions, or in a pita with greens, tomatoes, and a drizzle of mint-yogurt-cucumber sauce.

INGREDIENTS:

3 cloves garlic
1/2 cup packed Italian parsley (1 bunch), roughly chopped (tender stems okay)
1/2 cup packed cilantro (1 bunch), roughly chopped (tender stems okay)
1/2 cup roughly chopped scallions

2 (14.5 ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed (reserve aquafaba)
1 cup old-fashioned oats
2 tablespoons plus 1-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1-1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Reserved aquafaba from canned chickpeas

DIRECTIONS:

Add the garlic, parsley, cilantro, and scallions to the bowl of a large (~14 cup) food processor.  Pulse until finely chopped.

Add the chickpeas, oats, lemon juice, and spices, and pulse several times.  If the mixture looks dry, add aquafaba, one tablespoon at a time.  Continue pulsing and adding aquafaba until the mixture is able to stick together when pinched, but isn't over-processed into a paste.  [Side note: We usually add 3 to 4 tablespoons total].

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Use a cookie scoop and form the mixture into balls.  Transfer to a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

The falafel can be cooked one of two ways at this point:

  1. If you want to bake them all at once, preheat your oven to 375° F.  Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until they're at your preferred color and crispiness.
  2. Alternately, we enjoy freezing the raw falafel, pulling what we need for one or two servings, and frying in the air fryer.  Air fry at around 380° F for roughly 10 minutes, if frying from frozen.

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