There are few things in life as joyful as falafel – deep-fried golden brown balls made with a protein-rich batter of chickpeas, herbs and ground spices. If you love Lebanese cuisine as much as we do, here’s the only recipe you need for the perfect falafel, crisp on the outside yet so soft and fluffy within.
We make falafel often at home, sometimes serving it as part of “mezze” – a parade of small Lebanese plates that double up as appetisers paired with drinks at a dinner party. On other occasions, falafels are the hero ingredient for a simple yet substantive meal, stuffed in pita pockets with lashings of hummus, tahini and veggies.
Lebanese Recipes: Falafel
To make the perfect falafel, you will need the following key ingredients for the batter:
- Chickpeas, soaked overnight
- Fresh herbs: we are using parsley and coriander
- Toasted spices, that are ground into a fine powder: we are using cumin, coriander and black pepper
- Salt to taste
- Baking powder
- Toasted sesame seeds
- Oil for deep-frying (although you can choose to air-fry these instead).
Pro-Tips For Making The Perfect Falafel
- Refrigerate the batter for at least a few hours (or overnight if you can). The chilled mixture is much easier to handle and shape.
- Adding a pinch of baking powder just before cooking helps to fluff up the falafels.
- You can air-fry the falafel instead of deep-frying, although do note that the falafel won’t be as crispy or as fluffy.
Other Lebanese Dishes To Pair With This Falafel Recipe
If you’re looking to serve this falafel recipe as part of a larger Lebanese spread, here are a few other dishes to make alongside:
- 1 cup chickpeas
- ½ cup fresh parsley leaves
- ½ cup fresh coriander leaves
- 1 small onion
- 4-5 cloves garlic
- ½ tbsp ground cumin
- ½ tbsp ground coriander
- ½ tbsp black pepper
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
- oil (for frying)
- Soak 1 cup of chickpeas for 18 hours or longer. Pat dry completely.
- Blend the uncooked chickpeas with parsley, coriander, onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, black pepper and salt. Tip the batter out into a bowl, cling-wrap and refrigerate overnight in an airtight container.
- When ready to cook, stir in 1/2 tsp baking powder and 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds into the batter.
- Scoop out tablespoons of the batter snd form round balls/ patties.
- Heat oil in a medium wok/ pan and when bubbling, drop the patties into the oil and fry until crisp on the outside. You could alternatively air-fry the falafels.
- Place the falafel immediately on a plate lined with paper towels to drain out the excess oil.
- Serve with tahini as is, or with pita pockets to make your own falafel wraps!
We’d love to hear from you! Do let us know if you try this recipe – you can leave a comment below and/ or tag us in your delicious creations on Instagram @the_foodiediaries.
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