Mediterranean Cuisine for a get together party - Falafel recipe

Wishing you all Healthy and Happy New Year!!




Over the weekend, I invited few of my friends for a first get together party of the year.  Most of our get together parties somehow end up in Indian cuisine. This year all our friends decided to have different cuisine food for all our get together parties to explore our cooking skills.  For the first get together party of the year we started with Mediterranean cuisine. 



Menu for the party went like this 

Mediterranean salad 
Falafel
All sauces (tzatziki, hummus and harissa) 
Home made Baklava for dessert . Recipe Link
Pita for Falafel sandwich

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As usual I was super busy making all the preparations and missed to take pics of all the dishes. Some how managed to take few falafel pics. I wish I could have taken pics of all sauces which I made at home. May be next time :)

Recipe source is web with few variations.

Ingredients:

2 cups of dry chickpeas
1 1/2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 medium sized onion
Few green chilies (Optional)
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2tsp ground cumin
1/2tsp ground coriander
1/2 bunch cilantro or parsley or dill ( I used cilantro)
4 or 5 garlic cloves
Salt as per taste

Oil for deep fry

Procedure:

Soak chickpeas over night in a large bowl covering in cold water. They will double in size as they soak so add generous amount of water in the bowl(Approximately about 3 to 4 inches of water)

Rinse and drain chickpeas and pour in food processor (depending on your size of the processor do it in batches. I did in 2 batches).
Add chopped onion, garlic cloves, green chilies, cilantro, all purpose flour and all the spices (cumin, coriander, cayenne and salt). Pulse all the ingredients into coarse form until it forms some what kind of rough paste. Don't over process to smooth paste. Periodically check with a small quantity to test if you can make it into a ball. (consistency should be like coarse paste and holds well into a shape of ball or patty). Give a taste test and adjust spices as you like.
Remove the paste into a bowl and mix well and cover with plastic wrap.
In a skillet add oil for deep fry or use deep fryer if you have one. (I got a deep fryer as a christmas gift from my friend. So got a chance to use the fryer first time. I loved it since it was so easy to fry for larger batches)
If you are using deep fryer follow the instructions of the fryer (I used 325 as temperature on my deep fryer)
Heat oil on a medium heat. You do not want the oil to be super hot then the falafel won't cook inside.  Meanwhile form the mixture into falafel balls or patties using wet hands about 1 1/2 tbsp of mixture. Size of the ball/patty is your choice.  
Once the oil is hot test by frying one falafel. ( I always test with one for any kind of frying before I fry the entire batch. 
That way you will know if the oil is too hot or too cold and u will not waste the batch.) Usually it will take approximately 2 mts per side to turn into golden brown color. If it turns brown faster then oil is too hot and remove the oil from heat and keep it aside to get the right temperature.
If it is taking too long then oil is still not hot enough.  
Once the oil is at the right temperature fry 5 to 6 or more depending your skillet size. ( Do not over crowd the skillet). 

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Once falafels turn golden brown color remove from oil drain excess oil and transfer into absorbent paper to remove any additional oil.  
Serve hot with hummus, tzatziki hot sauce  or harissa sauce. 
(I made Hummus, Tzatziki and Harissa at home. But couldn't take pics. Will try to make them again and post the recipe soon.)
Another way to eat these falafels is with pita. I bought freshly made pita from our local restaurant. 
Cut pita into half to form two pockets, spread hummus in the pocket add chopped cucumber, onions, tomatoes or any kid of your favorite veggies and crush falafel and add the sauces as per your taste. 

Yummy Falafel sandwich ready to eat. 

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