Falafel

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Falafel
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These spicy chickpea fritters are finger-friendly, and the yogurt dipping sauce makes them fun to eat. The Middle Eastern treats are delicious warm from the pan, but they can also be served in pita bread with lettuce and tomato for a wholesome lunch box sandwich.

What you'll need

  • 1 cup dried chickpeas
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh curly parsley, stems removed, tightly packed
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda dissolved in 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • YOGURT DIPPING SAUCE:
  • 6-ounce container of plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh curly parsley
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

How to make it

  1. Rinse the chickpeas, then soak them in a medium-size bowl in several inches of water overnight in the refrigerator. (we've found the patties won't hold together as well if you use canned chickpeas.)

  2. To make the sauce, whisk together the yogurt and water in a small bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until thoroughly combined. Makes 1 cup.

  3. Drain the soaked chickpeas and place them in a food processor. Add all the remaining ingredients and blend, scraping the sides if necessary, until the mixture is creamy, about 1 minute total.

  4. Heat an inch of oil in a large, heavy frying pan to 375 degrees (a spoonful of the mixture should sizzle as soon as it's immersed). Scoop up a heaping dinner tablespoon of the falafel mixture and gently place it in the heated oil. Place 4 or 5 more spoonfuls in the pan. Fry the patties until they're thoroughly brown on one side, about 2 to 3 minutes, then flip them to brown the other side.

  5. Drain the patties on a plate covered with a paper towel and sprinkle with additional salt, if desired. Serve with yogurt dipping sauce. Makes 16 to 20 patties.

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