I usually create meals off the cuff - I buy what we're out of and what looks good, then instead of planning things out, get home from work and poke around hoping something delicious flies out of my imagination. That happened last night, when I had some pork tenderloin chunks about to go downhill and some cooking oil only used once for something non-noxious. Voila! A toasted kaiser roll (from the freezer) w/bbq pulled pork, spicy Thai coleslaw and fried onion strings was a more than a mouthful of awesome! We got busy, then tired and didn't clean up before going to bed (it happens you clean freaks), but in the morning there was a definite change...it appeared an IED had gone off in there and the oily carnage was EVERYWHERE. I believe someone had a wild hair (or is it hare?) for some falafel...which is what inspired this post.
I first made it after my parents went to Israel, and Mom said Dad LOVED the falafel there - they brought me an Israeli cookbook and I gave it a shot. So I don't know if it's really Greek, but the Tzatziki you must serve with it is....I've been using that for fried zucchini dip for YEARS. But I digress - yammering about the mess on facebook generated a request, so here ya go Denice - the recipe gets fooled around with every time, but these are the basics. Oh, and you can buy falafel mix in the bulk bins at Winco...even easier. And be prepared for dragon breath...you could kill vampires after the sauce!
1 can garbanzo beans, drained
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (or you can use cilantro)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 t. ground cumin (or 1...I'm not as fond of cumin)
1-1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. cayenne (or less if you're wimpy)
2 T. flour
Put garbanzo's in food processor, process until mealy. Add rest of ingredients EXCEPT flour and process until coarsely pureed...don't do it too long or it turns a weird shade of pukey green from the parsley. Remove to a bowl and stir in flour. With wet hands and a cookie scoop if you have one, form balls and let stand about 15 minutes. Fry in 350 degree oil until golden brown, drain on paper towels. Serve w/warmed pita wraps or pockets, quartered and sliced cucumber or shredded lettuce, tomato slices and Tzatziki - and if you close your eyes you'll imagine a sweaty guy with a unibrow, more chest hair than a labradoodle, shirt open to the waist and gold chains swingin' doin' a belly dance and shots of ouzo...OPA!
2 large cukes, peeled
1 C. plain yogurt (Nancy's Honey is my go to, it hardly has any honey in it)
2 C. sour cream
1/4 C. olive oil
2 T. vinegar (white, cider or I use seasoned rice)
10-12 cloves garlic, peeled (YUP...I said 10-12)
Salt and pepper to taste
Slice cukes lengthwise and use spoon to scoop out seeds. Cut in chunks and process in food processor until coarsely chopped, remove from processor and squeeze as much water out of it as possible (use your hands, a strainer won't work). Add remaining ingredients except garlic, mix well, then using garlic press, squeeze in one at a time until it's as garlicky as you can stand...adjust salt and pepper as needed. I switched the sour cream and yogurt measurements because I like it less yogurty...you could do it either way, or with all yogurt...I think that's traditional. But I'm not a traditional cook...to take a phrase from my son's vocab, "I do what I want". Enjoy, and you might want to have some Altoids handy for afterwards - Mr. Unibrow might be feeling frisky later!