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Thursday, May 24th, 2012

Falafel To Die For

By
Falafel - incultureparent/ © hikari - Fotolia.com

Falafel are deep-fried chick pea or fava bean balls. While they originated in Egypt, they are now eaten throughout the Middle East. They are commonly found in pita sandwiches but can top salads or stand alone.

Most recipes call for dried and soaked or canned chick peas. This one uses chick pea (or garbanzo) flour. While that may not be one of your pantry staples yet, once you make this recipe, it will be! Other than lemon juice, this recipe calls for all items you most likely have on hand already. And the recipe is forgiving enough that you can substitute or ignore spices, depending on taste and availability.

Ingredients:
1 cup garbanzo or chick pea flour (found at most natural grocers)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon dried parsley or oregano
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon coriander
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, onion powder, and/or garlic powder
2 teaspoons lemon juice (can substitute lime juice and/or white vinegar)
1/2 cup hot water
2-4 tablespoons olive oil (for frying)
Optional: pita bread, tomatoes, lettuce, tzatziki

Instructions:
1. Mix dry ingredients. Add lemon and water. Mix. Let stand 10 minutes.

2. Pour oil in large skillet until about 1/4 inch coats the pan. (The larger the skillet, the more oil is needed.) Heat on medium high. Drop batter in tablespoon-size balls. Fry until golden on both sides, about 10 minutes total. Drain on a paper towel.

3. Serve in a warm pita with chopped tomatoes, lettuce and tzatziki.

© 2012, Lauren Capitani. All rights reserved.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Lauren Capitani was an early foodie. While her friends were busy watching Family Ties , she was tuned into Graham Kerr and Yan Can Cook, and served her friends and family dishes such as beef wellington and baked alaska while still a teen. After college, Lauren received Masters' degrees in both journalism and business and worked in both subsequent fields. At 29, she decided to rewrite her life and became an assistant teacher. For the first time, her vocation became her avocation. She now has certification in both both elementary and early childhood education and has taught at seven schools on both coasts (and in between). Lauren has lived summers in France, England, Spain, Japan, and Thailand, and has visited more than a dozen other countries. When her own children start limiting their food choices, Lauren turned it into a teaching moment and created One World Whisk, a global cooking initiative for children. The project garnered more than 200 followers before its one-month charter was complete.

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