May 7, 2013


Beans never tasted better. I mean, made by me. I'm addicted. I think it's the cooking that makes the beans so unattractive at times, that heavy smell in the house. I didn't know that you can make something out of just-soaked legumes. Revelation!

I have good memories of falafels. When I was living in NYC, there was a place, just downstairs, small, with no tables, that welcomed everybody with warm finger food and even warmer atmosphere. The falafels were my favorite, big and meaty. Tasted like nothing else and tasted fantastic.

And so do mine. There is no boring, difficult bean taste. There is some garlic, parsley and cardamon flavor, but neither one of them in particular. There is a nice crust on the outside. They are not greasy from frying. The frying was fast and mess/smell free. Baking would take a lot longer and the falafels would turned out dry.

I was debating whether to use a whole package of chickpeas, I'm glad I did. We ate them all up, me - most of them. Hania had hers with strawberries, Julian with tartar sauce. I had mine with my fingers. I love finger food!

Recipe adapted from Giallo Zafferano
time: 24 hrs inactive + 20 min
makes about 30 pieces


  • 400 g (about 1 pound) dry chickpeas
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced thin
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
  • 10 g (1/2 ounce) parsley (1 medium sized bunch), just the leaves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon (8 g)  salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamon
  • 2 g (1/4 teaspoon) baking soda
  • 35 ml (2 Tablespoons) water
  • 20 g (2 Tablespoons) flour
  • about 1 cup (250 ml) oil (peanut, canola) for frying

  1. Soak beans overnight. Add water if necessary. They have to be covered with water.
  2. Next day, drain the beans. Check for the bad ones. Place the peas on a cotton cloth and dry them with another cotton cloth.
  3. In a small bowl, mix water with baking soda.
  4. In a food processor with a steal blade, blend chickpeas with onion, garlic and parsley till grainy (like brown sugar). My processor is small, so I had to do this process in 3 steps. 
  5. Add baking soda mix. Add spices. Add flour. Combine it with your hands. You can stop here and continue later in the day. Cover the mix with a wrapping foil and place it in the fridge. Using an ice cream scoop or/and your hands, form balls, size of a large walnut. Place them aside.
  6. Prepare a large plate lined with paper towel.
  7. In a small skillet, heat oil on medium/high (6 on a scale 1-10). The oil should be about 1/2 inch (1 cm) deep. The smaller the skillet, the less oil you'll need. 
  8. Put about 5 falafels onto the skillet (more will cool oil too much) and fry 2 minutes on each side. They should be deep golden. Transfer the ready ones onto a prepared plate and proceed with the rest. Let them cool for at least 3-5 minutes. They are good cold as well.

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