This week’s Food Matters Project recipe was supposed to be an Ethiopian-type stew with deep fried chickpea fritters, but it was so stiflingly muggy today, we couldn’t bear the thought of cooking & eating something so warm.
Instead, we opted to keep things a little cooler with a fresh salad, creamy tahini dressing & crispy baked falafel from fellow Food Matters Project member, Kate.
The common thread here is the chickpeas, simply soaked for a few hours, uncooked, then pulsed with some fresh herbs & spices. Baking these patties in an oiled cast iron skillet makes for a crispy exterior & tender interior without the grease, the guilt, or the “fried” smell lingering in the house.
CRISPY BAKED FALAFEL
makes about 10 2 1/2 inch patties
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup dried chickpeas, picked through
1/4 medium onion, roughly chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1/2 cup fresh cilantro
3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Set the chickpeas in a large bowl & cover with water by a few inches. Set aside & let sit for at least an hour & up to 8.
Preheat oven to 375°. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a large cast iron skillet & spread around to make sure the bottom of the pan is evenly coated. Set aside.
Drain the chickpeas & add to the bowl of a food processor. Add the remaining oil, onion, parsley, cilantro, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, salt & pepper. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides, if necessary. Using your hands, scoop out about 3 tablespoons of the mixture. Flatten into a patty, about 2 1/2 inches in diameter & 1/2 thick & set in the prepared skillet. Repeat with the remaining mixture.
Bake for 13 minutes. Remove from the oven & carefully flip each patty. Place back in the oven & bake for 13-15 minutes more, until lightly browned on both sides. Let cool for 3-5 minutes, then stuff in a pita, top a salad, or just enjoy on their own.
CREAMY TAHINI DILL DRESSING
makes about 1/2 cup
1/4 cup tahini (sesame seed paste)
1 lemon, zested
2 lemons, juiced
1 tablespoon white miso (We could only find golden. It was fine.)
2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
2 tablespoons fresh dill
1 tablespoon fresh parsley
pinch of cayenne pepper
1/3 cup water
salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
In the bowl of a small food processor, or blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until well combined & smooth.
from Cookie & Kate