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Homemade Falafel

Yields1 Serving

 1 19 oz (540 mL) can chickpeas, drained
 a small chunk of purple onion, or 1-2 green onions, chopped
 1-2 garlic cloves, peeled
 1/4-1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
 1 tsp cumin
 1/4 tsp salt
 pinch dried chili flakes
 1-2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
 1/4 tsp baking powder
 canola or other neutral vegetable oil, for frying

Put the chickpeas, onion, garlic, cilantro, cumin, salt and chili flakes in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until combined but still chunky, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Add the flour and baking powder and pulse until you have a soft mixture that you can roll into balls without sticking to your hands too much. You can make it as smooth as you want, but I like leaving a little texture.


Roll the dough into meatball-sized balls, and if you like, flatten each slightly, making a little patty. (I like doing this for maximum surface area, which equals more crunch. Flatter also means they cook through more quickly.)


In a shallow pot or skillet, heat about 1/2-inch of canola or other mild vegetable oil until it’s hot but not smoking. Test it with a bit of falafel mixture or a scrap of bread – the oil should bubble up around it. Cook the falafel for a few minutes per side, without crowding the pan (which will cool down the oil), until they’re golden and crisp. (You could get away with using just a drizzle of oil – if you do this, best to leave the falafels round, so that you can roll them around in the pan to brown all sides.) Transfer to a paper towel lined plate.


Serve warm, with tzatziki or thick plain Greek yogurt spiked with lemon, garlic, tahini and salt. Makes about 20 falafel patties.