Making good falafels is something that I have had trouble with for a while – either I couldn’t get the right texture or they would fall apart in the fryer! These are based on a tip I got recently at the Topaz Cafe in Ashton-under-Lyne, which also means that egg doesn’t have to be added to bind them together, so these are Vegan too. (Clue: don’t cook the chickpeas!)
100g dried chickpeas, soaked overnight and drained
Large handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
Large handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
1 red onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
Sunflower or vegetable oil for deep fat frying
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tbs plain flour
1 tbs baking powder
200g bulgur wheat, soaked and cooked as per guidelines
Juice of one lemon
Handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 red pepper, grilled, skinned and sliced
1. Add the chickpeas, onion, garlic, fresh herbs and 2 tbs water to a food processor and chop until very finely ground.
2. Add the mix to a large bowl and add the ground spices, baking powder and flour and mix thoroughly. Form into tightly pressed balls with your hands.
3. Add the balls to a pre-heated deep fat fryer set at 170°C and fry for 5 to 8 minutes, depending upon size.
4. Rest cooked falafel on kitchen paper, and continue to fry in batches until complete.
5. To make the tabbouleh, simply add the cooked bulgur wheat to all the other ingredients and mix well. Allow to rest for 10 minutes to let the flavours develop. Serve with pitta bread and tomatoes, or with a dressing/dip of your choice.