1 pint plain nonfat yogurt (we prefer Whole Soy and Co.)
2 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 cucumber, chopped into small cubes
1 Tbs. fresh dill, finely chopped
Juice from lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Directions for Yogurt Sauce:
- Place all ingredients into a small bowl and mix well with a fork
- Drizzle over prepared Falafel
Ingredients for Falafel:
1 cup dried chickpeas (or canned equivalent, rinsed and drained)
1/2 large onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon salt
1/2-1 teaspoon dried hot red pepper
4 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon baking powder
4-6 tablespoons flour
Oil for frying
Chopped tomato for garnish
Diced onion for garnish
Diced green bell pepper for garnish
Diced cucumber for garnish
Whole wheat pita bread
Directions for Falafel:
- Put the chickpeas in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover them by at least 2 inches. Let soak overnight, then drain. Or use canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed.
- Place the drained, uncooked chickpeas and the onions in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the parsley, cilantro, salt, hot pepper, garlic, and cumin. Process until blended but not pureed.
- Sprinkle in the baking powder and 4 tablespoons of the flour, and pulse. You want to add enough bulgur or flour so that the dough forms a small ball and no longer sticks to your hands. Turn into a bowl and refrigerate, covered, for several hours.
- Form the chickpea mixture into balls about the size of walnuts, or use a falafel scoop, available in Middle-Eastern markets.
- Heat 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees in a deep pot or wok and fry 1 ball to test. If it falls apart, add a little flour. Then fry about 6 balls at once for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Stuff half a pita with falafel balls, chopped tomatoes, onion, green pepper, and cucumber. Drizzle with yogurt sauce or tahina thinned with water.*
Photo: Getty Images