I always seem to have the same issue with falafel – they can be soooo dryyyy. Usually I need a glass of water to get them down, and it really puts me off ever ordering them. So I thought it was time to make my own, and to make them how I like them – soft and moist (sorry) in the middle, and perfectly crispy on the edge. Because these quick falafel are much less dry inside, they’re not quite as resilient as normal falafel – you do need to handle them a little carefully, but the worst that will happen is they’ll lose their shape. They’ll still taste amazing! So don’t be scared.
I deliberately made it so that this recipe requires absolutely no pre-cooking whatsoever (which immediately turns me on to a recipe, so I’m hoping it will for you as well…). You just need to blitz up some onion and garlic in a food processor, add your tinned (i.e. already cooked) chickpeas and some spices, and mix it all up again.
Falafel is often deep fried, but in an effort to remain somewhat healthy, I fried mine in just a couple of tablespoons of oil. If you dip your falafel in flour first, they still get nice and crispy on the outside, so I don’t feel you lose out on much!
You can serve these quick falafel however you like – I chose to stuff them into a pitta bread with some lettuce and salsa. It’s also pretty common to serve falafel with tzatziki or hummus, so take your pick – though personally I’ve always found hummus a very bizarre addition, since you’re literally smearing chickpeas onto chickpeas.
I enjoyed these quick falafel both hot and cold, so they’re great for popping in a lunchbox too (just leave your salsa off until just before eating!).
- 1 small onion cut into a few chunks
- 1 clove garlic
- 400 g tin chickpeas 240g when drained, drained
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/4 - 1/2 tsp chilli powder
- 4 tbsp fresh coriander chopped
- Black pepper
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 2 tbsp oil
- To serve: pitta bread optional, lettuce, salsa, tzatziki
Place the onion and garlic in a food processor, and blitz for a few seconds until a paste is formed. Add the drained chickpeas and spices, and blitz again until fairly smooth.
Add the chopped coriander, and mix by hand until well combined (or blitz again in the food processor if you prefer - I just wanted the coriander to remain visible). Season well.
With clean hands, shape the mixture into a few small balls (I made 6), and press them down gently into patty-shapes. Spoon the flour onto a small plate, and gently coat each patty in the flour (don’t worry if you don’t manage to coat the sides - just the two flat sides will do).
Heat the oil in a frying pan, and add the patties. Cook on a medium heat for around 4 minutes each side, until golden brown and crispy.
If desired, serve in a pitta bread with lettuce and a cooling sauce (e.g. salsa or tzatziki).