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Felafel/Falafel--Cook-Off 30

Cookoff

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91 replies to this topic

#31 ChefCrash

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Posted 04 March 2007 - 11:35 PM

To us, this is known as work food. That is, we only have it at work. I have never seen it being made. My wife, or one of the sisters in law or all of them would make Falafel, and would deliver them in a deconstructed state to where, we the brothers, work.

When I saw this Cook Off, I knew we had something to contribute, our Falafel are as good as any served on the streets of Beirut.


2 C Hummus
1 C Split or cracked Fava beans
6 cloves garlic
1/2 C parsley
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1 1/2 tsp coriander seed ground
1 T salt
1/2 tsp cayenne
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

water to correct consistency while mixing.

Served with Tarator

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Edited by ChefCrash, 05 March 2007 - 12:01 AM.


#32 Milagai

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 06:38 AM

That last post looked just fantastic! Thanks for posting.
Memo to self: newly found 2007 resolution; perfect homemade
felafel....
Milagai

#33 agalarneau

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 08:55 AM

ChefCrash, is that pickled turnip in your picture (the pinkish stuff). Do you have a recipe for that? What makes it pink?

#34 ChefCrash

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 10:22 AM

Thanks Milagai

agalarneau, yes they're Turnips and get their color from beets.

Start with 12% solution (120g salt per 1 liter of water). To that, add 1/3 liter white vinegar and bring to a boil just to sterilize.
Pack Turnips in jars, along with 2 slices of raw beets and 1 or 2 serrano peppers.
Fill with hot brine and wait a few days.

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#35 deltadoc

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 12:31 PM

[quote name='ChefCrash' date='Mar 4 2007, 11:35 PM']

2 C Hummus
1 C Split or cracked Fava beans
6 cloves garlic
1/2 C parsley
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1 1/2 tsp coriander seed ground
1 T salt
1/2 tsp cayenne
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

water to correct consistency while mixing.

Served with Tarator

/quote]


So, what's your recipe for hummous? Is it hummous or hummous bi tahini?

And what is Tarator?

doc

#36 Eilen

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 12:54 PM

What did you serve them with?  A good falafel ball should stand on it's own - but the condiments are part of the fun.

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I had picked up some pita from my favorite middle eastern restaurant and I also made a sauce from yoghurt, cucumber, mint, garlic and lemon juice. No dill b/c I couldn't find any at the store. Also some lettuce leaves and extra cucumber slices. Oh, and feta, too, which is probably a no-no but we like it. :biggrin:

So what is the traditional way to serve them? I mean, with what condiments? I don't think yoghurt sauce is, but I've never made anything else for them.

#37 Pam R

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 01:46 PM

I like them with yogurt sauce as well. I can only speak for the Israeli falafel I've had (and Canadian :rolleyes: ) - but there are all sorts of things you can eat with them. Tehini, hummus, harissa, schug, Israeli salad (finely chopped cucumber, tomato, onion, pepper dressed with oil and lemon juice/vinegar), deep fried vegetable (my favorite is cauliflower), pickled vegetables and the local Israeli falafel place here has one that comes with fries in it and one with sweet potato fries. :wub:

#38 Pontormo

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 02:25 PM


2 C Hummus
Served with Tarator

So, what's your recipe for hummous? Is it hummous or hummous bi tahini?

And what is Tarator? doc

View Post

I don't roast lamb heads, but I think I might be able to answer this correctly:

1) Look at photographs. ChefCrash was most likely referring to chickpeas since the larger amount of round, dried peas are mixed in with the dried fava beans.

2) Use google and you're bound to find recipes. It's a thinned tahini sauce, delicious, made by vigorously beating a combination of cold water and lemon juice with the tahini paste and adding salt and garlic to taste.

Edited by Pontormo, 05 March 2007 - 02:26 PM.

"Viciousness in the kitchen.
The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

#39 Kerry Beal

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Posted 05 March 2007 - 04:09 PM

Good recipe for Tarator Sauce aka garlic sauce aka tahina sauce here. I used a small food processor rather than a blender and got excellent results.

Edited by Kerry Beal, 05 March 2007 - 04:10 PM.


#40 deltadoc

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 06:20 AM


2 C Hummus
Served with Tarator

So, what's your recipe for hummous? Is it hummous or hummous bi tahini?

And what is Tarator? doc

View Post

I don't roast lamb heads, but I think I might be able to answer this correctly:

1) Look at photographs. ChefCrash was most likely referring to chickpeas since the larger amount of round, dried peas are mixed in with the dried fava beans.

2) Use google and you're bound to find recipes. It's a thinned tahini sauce, delicious, made by vigorously beating a combination of cold water and lemon juice with the tahini paste and adding salt and garlic to taste.

View Post


I just love it when someone other than the person to whom I was addressing the question answers (or rather speculates) for the original poster what the original poster meant.

If indeed the orignal poster was referring to garbanzo beans as hummous, that would be the first time I'd ever heard that reference made. But it was a legitimate question what ChefCrash meant by hummous, because it is an endless argument whether "hummous" and "hummous bi tahini", which are erroneously used interchangeably, consisted of.

As far as "googling" hummous recipes, they're as assorted as almost any recipe you'd care to google. I learned how to make hummous bi tahini from a Palestinian master chef 20 years ago. But would that hummous bi tahini be as ideal for ChefCrash's falafel recipe? Don't know, so that is why I questioned ChefCrash.

I was interested in ChefCrash's recipe, since the hummous he uses results in the falafel in the pictures. His pictorial and written descriptions of the falafel made me want to try "his" process.

But thanks to the other poster who told us what Tarator sauce is. That is the first time I'd heard that name, and also, it is the first time I've heard that "garlic sauce" is synonymous with Tahini sauce.

doc

#41 Kerry Beal

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 07:00 AM

But thanks to the other poster who told us what Tarator sauce is.  That is the first time I'd heard that name, and also, it is the first time I've heard that "garlic sauce" is synonymous with Tahini sauce. 

doc

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Don't know if garlic sauce = tahini sauce world wide, but that's what they call it where I buy my falafel sandwiches.

I was back to the store where I bought my falafel ingedients yesterday, the owner is persian I think. He was horrified to learn that I'd added 4 cloves of garlic to my tahini sauce. He felt it didn't need garlic at all.

#42 CharityCase

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:51 PM

Oh blessed falafel. This subject is near and dear to me.

ChefCrash's posted pic is a good point at which to discuss another difference between the lebanese and israeli styles of falafel sandwiches - the pita. I see the dinner plate pita you were eating is much larger than the "sandwich pocket' sizes I have seen in israel. I think the pickled turnip is also a lebanese addition whereas israelis add the tomato and cucumber mix, hummus and tahini as primary ingredients.

In unrelated news, you can have an excellent falafel in Paris at L'as du Fallafel (VirtualTourist)

Edited by CharityCase, 06 March 2007 - 12:53 PM.


#43 CharityCase

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:53 PM


But thanks to the other poster who told us what Tarator sauce is.  That is the first time I'd heard that name, and also, it is the first time I've heard that "garlic sauce" is synonymous with Tahini sauce. 

doc

View Post

Don't know if garlic sauce = tahini sauce world wide, but that's what they call it where I buy my falafel sandwiches.

I was back to the store where I bought my falafel ingedients yesterday, the owner is persian I think. He was horrified to learn that I'd added 4 cloves of garlic to my tahini sauce. He felt it didn't need garlic at all.

View Post


They're not synonymous as tahini is thinned sesame paste and the garlic sauce I am familiar with is some sort of crazy congealed glob made with evaporated milk, garlic powder and who knows what else. I am not a fan of it at all though I know plenty who are.

#44 Kerry Beal

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:56 PM

They're not synonymous as tahini is thinned sesame paste and the garlic sauce I am familiar with is some sort of crazy congealed glob made with evaporated milk, garlic powder and who knows what else. I am not a fan of it at all though I know plenty who are.

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Actually the garlic sauce that they make at the restaurant I frequent is simply the tahini sauce made with lots of garlic. Not a drop of evaporated milk or garlic powder.

#45 ChefCrash

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 06:46 PM

Don't know if garlic sauce = tahini sauce world wide, but that's what they call it where I buy my falafel sandwiches. 

I was back to the store where I bought my falafel ingedients yesterday, the owner is persian I think.  He was horrified to learn that I'd added 4 cloves of garlic to my tahini sauce.  He felt it didn't need garlic at all.

View Post


Yes Kerry, four cloves of garlic as well as a T of salt is excessive.

Tarator is the equivalent of Tartar sauce in the U.S., in that it is served with most fried fish dishes in Lebanon, as well as Falafel and Shawerma sandwiches.

In a small bowl add 1 clove of garlic, a dash of salt and mash with a wooden pestle.
Add ~ 1/2 C Tahini, juice of 1/2 a lemon and stir. You will feel the mixture start to seize and acquire a granular texture, that is normal but do not add more lemon juice. Add water a little at a time until the mixture is smooth and you reach the desired consistency. Dash salt to taste.

#46 prasantrin

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 07:00 PM

Is tome (sp?) ever used as a sauce for falafel? The sauce/dip made with garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil. I can't remember its proper name, but I'm sure there was a topic on it in the ME forum once. I imagine it would be good with falafel--I'm not a big tahini fan.

#47 FoodMan

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 09:26 AM

So, my question.  If you use a combo of soaked favas and chickpeas and then grind them up, how are the soaked favas different than the soaked chickpeas (before cooking or mixing with anything else)?  What do the favas lend?

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Well they're two different legumes with two different tastes and textures. I don't know what else to tell you other than to give them a try and decide which you like best.

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Exactly! If your taste fava beans after being soaked you'll notice their distinctive taste. For me it is indispensible. Chickpeas alone make an ok falafel, but the taste is just not right.

I know this does not exaclty answer Pontormo's question earlier, but In Lebanon the two legumes are always BOTH used to make the Falafel so that's what I'm used to and that's what I like. Once again, do give both versions a try and see which you like best.

As for Ceci (chickpea) flour, I would never use it. It will give the falafel a homogenous, smooth and doughy texture. They'll more or less be Sicilian Panelle by that point. Falafel needs to have a nice slightly corse texture to it. See Chef Crash's post for a great looking recipe and amazing pictures. I really must make soe soon...right after I replenish my supply of homemade pickled turnips (I ran out last week after using the last bit in shish tawook sandwiches...but that's another topic)

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#48 FoodMan

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 09:33 AM

Doc-
I am not ChefCrash, but Pontormo is correct. By hummus, he meant chickpeas. The word Hummus in Arabic is Chickpeas (aka Garbanzo beans).

As for Hummus bi Tahini which is sometimes refered to as hummus especially in the US, well that's another topic and I think we have a whole thread for it in the Middle East Forum. We can discuss it there.

If interested here is the taratoor sauce recipe I use for Falafel.

Hope this helps.

E. Nassar
Houston, TX

My Blog
contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com


#49 SeanWalberg

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 01:46 PM

I need to go pick the brain of the owner of the Falafel Place down the street from me . . . his falafel are amazing.  :rolleyes:

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Are you talking about Falafel Place on Corydon? If so, I think we're neighbours, I'm on the same block as it.

Sean

#50 agalarneau

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 06:50 AM

Is it important to peel the fava beans after you soak them? In the pictures above, the favas have been peeled, it seems.

#51 nduran

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Posted 10 March 2007 - 11:56 AM

Is it important to peel the fava beans after you soak them? In the pictures above, the favas have been peeled, it seems.

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Check the first page.

#52 agalarneau

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 09:09 PM

I did falafel with a 2:1 ratio of chickpeas to favas, which I peeled after they soaked. 1 t of baking powder to 3 c soaked bean mixture. The best addition was subbing cilantro leaf plus stem for the parsley and doubling the cumin (to 2T). Happy eaters.

#53 FoodMan

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 08:13 AM

Is it important to peel the fava beans after you soak them? In the pictures above, the favas have been peeled, it seems.

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It is important, but the favas can be bought peeled. That is what most people do. Look at your local middle eastern market and they should have them.

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contact: enassar(AT)gmail(DOT)com


#54 snowangel

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 09:18 AM

Is it important to peel the fava beans after you soak them? In the pictures above, the favas have been peeled, it seems.

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It is important, but the favas can be bought peeled. That is what most people do. Look at your local middle eastern market and they should have them.

View Post



This will probably win the prize for stupidest question of the year, but how do I know if the dried favas I bought have been peeled? Or, will it be evident after I've soaked them?

On another note, when I make falafel, do I have to fry all of them at once, or can I hold some of the mixture for frying for lunch the next day?
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#55 Dianne

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 10:17 AM

This will probably win the prize for stupidest question of the year, but how do I know if the dried favas I bought have been peeled?  Or, will it be evident after I've soaked them?


At my Mid East store the bag says "peeled" and the do look different. The peeled ones are a light beige colour. I can also get split and peeled ones.

I don't know the answer to your second question, but I have reheated cooked leftovers in the oven with success.

#56 Eilen

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 11:15 AM

On another note, when I make falafel, do I have to fry all of them at once, or can I hold some of the mixture for frying for lunch the next day?

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You can definitely keep them in the fridge--I think nduran (who seems to be the felafel expert) said s/he keeps the mixture in the fridge for up to a week. Someone else said they froze patties also.



I have another question: since we're heading into fava season and we're growing them this year, can I use fresh favas to make felafel? Or will the texture not be the same?

#57 Khadija

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 02:18 PM

Made falafel this weekend, using FoodMan's recipe from recipegullet. Excellent. This is the second time I've made falafel without using one of those dry mixes.

The first time, I used FoodMan's recipe, but tried to bake the falafel. I formed them into little balls, and put them into mini-muffin tins and sprayed with that awful oil-spray in a can (a trick I read about on egullet). They were disgusting -- raw in the middle and dry on the outside.

This time, it was a different story. I will never hesitate to fry falafel again.

Edited by Khadija, 12 March 2007 - 02:19 PM.


#58 nduran

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 06:19 PM

This will probably win the prize for stupidest question of the year, but how do I know if the dried favas I bought have been peeled?  Or, will it be evident after I've soaked them?


If they're not peeled they'll have sort of a purplish skin on them with a dark line along one end. If they are then they'll be mostly white.

I have another question: since we're heading into fava season and we're growing them this year, can I use fresh favas to make felafel? Or will the texture not be the same?


I've never tried fresh ones, but I'd be inclined to think there would be too much moisture in them. Worth a shot to try, just keep a screen over your pan in case they start popping.

#59 SeanWalberg

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 06:41 PM

So I did the epicurious recipe posted earlier, made some tzatziki , and gave it a shot.

Posted Image

Crunchy on the outside, though a bit soft on the inside. It tasted much better than the boxed stuff!

(the stick type things are fried potatoes)

Sean

#60 CharityCase

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 01:02 PM

URGENT HELP NEEDED!

I have a going-away party for friends tonight, falafel is highly sought after so it looks like we're going ahead with it.

I'd like to use the RecipeGullet recipe but I don't have time to soak the dried beans. So can they be par boiled? Or am I better off using canned favas and canned chickpeas? Will either work provided the beans are quite dry?

Don't shoot me, I see that soaking dried beans is the thing but I'd like to have a go at this in the next best (i.e. from scratch) format even if it means changing this crucial dimension.





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