During medical school I worked at a juice bar that sold fresh squeezed juice as well as falafel and pita. The owner was originally from Jordan and made the falafel and baklava using his family's super secret recipe. Which, by the way, was crazy tasty. I definitely ate my weight in falafel several times over while working there!
I have tried to recreate his super secret recipe multiple times and this is the closest that I've come to nailing it. For a healthier kick, the falafel is baked instead of fried and topped with an array of fresh veggies. It is the perfect healthy meal for these warm spring days!
- 2 cups chickpeas
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped
- 1 1/2 tsp cumin
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp red chili powder / ground cayenne pepper
- 1 1/2 tbsp. all purpose flour (optional)
- Salt to taste
- Whole wheat or gluten free pita. (Avoiding grains? Substitute with lettuce leaves!)
- Your favorite veggies (ie. red onion, cucumber, tomatoes, peppers, grated carrot, lettuce, spinach, etc.)
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/2 a cucumber, grated
- Juice from 1/4 of a lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste
Wash and soak the chickpeas overnight. Drain. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place chickpeas, onion, cumin, garlic, parsley, coriander, black pepper, red chili powder/cayenne pepper, flour, and salt into a food processor and process until smooth. Form the mixture into 1/2 inch thick rounds and place on a baking pan. Bake for 10 minutes, flip them over, and cook for an additional 15 minutes. While they cook, prepare the tzatziki. Combine the yogurt, grated cucumber, juice from 1/4 of a lemon, salt, and pepper. After the falafel has finished cooking, remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. If using pita bread, broil for 45 seconds on each side. Finally, half the pita bread and stuff with tzatziki and falafel. Don't forget to pile on your favorite veggies! Enjoy!