|Surprisingly easy to cook from scratch, this traditional Egyptian dish, made with Split Fava Beans, is delicious as a snack or meze.
Authentic Egyptian falafels (or more accurately ta’amia) are made with split fava beans instead of chickpeas. Unlike many others, our recipe is both gluten free and vegan – it contains no eggs, flour or breadcrumbs.
Makes about 16 falafels
- 500g split fava beans, soaked overnight (or speed-soaked in boiling water)
- 1 red onion
- Big bunch fresh coriander
- 1 red chilli pepper
- Zest of 2 lemons
- 10 mint leaves
- 3 pinches coarse salt
- 3 pinches fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tsp cayenne
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- Vegetable oil for deep frying
For the yoghurt sauce
- 8 mint leaves
- 350g yoghurt (or vegan alternative)
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Coarse salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- For this recipe you need to soak the beans, but don’t boil them as all the cooking happens in the oil. The beans can be soaked overnight or speed-soaked by placing them in water that’s been brought to the boil, then taking it off the heat and leaving to stand for 1 hour.
- Coarsely chop the herbs, chilli and onion. Mix with the beans, spices and lemon zest, and pulse in a food processor until fairly smooth – though not to a paste.
- Roll ping pong ball size patties from the mixture and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare the yoghurt sauce. Finely chop the mint and stir with the yoghurt, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Refrigerate.
- Heat enough vegetable oil to cover a single layer of patties in a deep pan. When the oil is very hot, carefully place the patties in the oil and deep fry until dark golden brown – this will take a few minutes.
- Drain briefly on kitchen paper and sprinkle lightly with salt.
- Serve the falafel with the yoghurt sauce, a lightly dressed salad and some pitta bread.
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