A sure-fire falafel recipe! I’ve had a lot of failures, but now the chickpea balls turn out, I would say, perfect. The best: Making falafel yourself is totally easy, and the result is delicious. Here I share a few essential simple tricks with you so that nothing stands in the way of enjoying delicious homemade falafel.
Who does not know them, falafel, the deep-fried crispy balls or patties from the Arab kitchen, which is offered as a snack in many parts of the world, often together with hummus. Falafel consists mainly of chickpeas and are therefore a great source of protein, among other things. Otherwise, herbs, onions, garlic, and spices can also be found in falafel. A very healthy “fast food”.
The “best” falafel recipe
For a while I only made falafel from ready-made mixes: Falafel mix, add warm water, let it soak, shape the falafel, fry them, done. Only after an eternity, I dealt with “real recipes” and realized that they are actually totally simple – or should be.
I’ve had so many failures! I have tried so many “the best falafel recipe” and “the very best falafel recipe” without success. Regularly. Fail. Then again after a few years. Fail. And again. Always the same: while frying the falafel, they immediately turned into crumbs. Grmpf, there is no such thing. Therefore, in between, I always went back to the finished mixture.
The very best falafel recipe
One day, I stumbled across a super duper falafel recipe again. The difference, however, was that no cooked canned chickpeas were used, but raw, only soaked. Huh? And that should work? I couldn’t imagine but was assured.
And it actually worked! I could hardly believe it. At last! Alleluia. Since then I have been making them again and again because they are really very easy to prepare: Chop up ingredients with the food processor *), shape falafel, fry them.
Self-praise smells like delicious falafel. They are really incredibly good, both in taste and texture. Speaking of which: I recently took the latter to the next level with another simple trick, namely to dry the chickpeas really well after soaking them. Don’t worry, you don’t have to buff them one by one. Simply spread them out on a tea towel and pat dry them, it’s very quick.
If they are well dried, the mixture usually doesn’t need any flour or hardly any flour. Flour makes them sticky and dry. And because that’s the way it is, baking powder was added to the mix so far. That is no longer applicable. If I have the feeling that they will fall into pieces for sure, then I add about one or two tablespoons of chickpea flour, which is nothing more than ground chickpeas. By the way, I’ll tell you another simple trick for perfect falafel further down in the recipe …
I love falafel as a snack in a durum, wrap, or sandwich. But they are also wonderfully suitable as a side dish – whether on a plate or in a bowl. Slightly flatter and larger, they are also a delicious burger patty. I also like to eat them as a snack in between, just like that, when passing by, without anything. Or, of course, even better, with homemade hummus.
- 150 g (5.3 oz or approx. 3/4 cup) dry chickpeas
- ½ onion
- 1 clove of garlic
- approx. 1 small hand full of fresh parsley and fresh coriander (leaves and smaller stems)
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- pinch of cinnamon
- 1 tsp salt
- approx. ¼ tsp ground pepper
- oil for frying (e.g. rapeseed oil)
- Optional: 1-2 tbsp chickpea flour (I buy it cheaply in Indian supermarkets as “Gram Flour”. You can sometimes also find it in drug stores like dm in Austria
- Soak the chickpeas in water for about 24 hrs (I already soaked them way less and much longer - so approx. 24 hrs is a good time frame). Change the water after every 12 hrs.
- At the end of the soaking time, strain the chickpeas and dry them: To do this, simply spread out a tea towel, place the chickpeas on it, and pat them as dry as possible with the tea towel. The drier, the less flour or no flour is needed, which means they stay nice and fluffy.
- Now put the chickpeas and all the other ingredients (except the oil) in a food processor *). The mass should be fine, but by no means homogeneous.
- Now comes another trick: Put the mixture in the refrigerator for about 60 minutes. This will allow the excess starch to seep out and make it easier to shape the balls. You can also leave the mass longer in the refrigerator, like overnight.
- Then form small patties or, even better, balls, because they don't dry out as quickly, but they devour a little more oil when frying.
The mass looks as if it would never stick together and falls apart immediately. But in a miraculous way, the falafel stick together! Please try frying a falafel first before adding too much flour out of suspicion.
- Fry in oil (do not be sparing) until the outside is nice and brown and crispy. Turn the patties or balls regularly.
Incidentally, that's the amount that fits in the Kitchenaid Mini Food Processor *). I also sometimes make double the amount and then chop it up in the larger food processor of my food processor.