Baked Serrano Herb Falafel – still drooling over this one. I was first introduced to falafel during a night out on the town while I was living in Vancouver. It was February in 2010, the day of the BIG gold medal hockey game – the Olympics. The streets were packed with people…tourists, locals, & proud Canadians. A group of us spent the day at The Roxy cheering on the athletes. Still on a high after the hockey game, we made our way to the streets for some quick grub. Sammy, meet Falafel. I’m not sure if it was my extreme hunger from copping a squat for HOURS at the club, OR that I may have just met my soulmate. I hadn’t tasted something SO good in so long. Yum. It had this super garlicky sauce on it that totally put me over the edge into a food coma – I DID NOT think twice about my breath. And we were in some pretty great company that night too – sorry, not sorry. My version today is a compilation of my favourites – serrano peppers, a variety of fresh herbs, creamy tzatziki, and BAKED. Fried is definitely good, but when at home, I skip the oil (flour too) & turn to my oven.
I like my falafels round – just how I’ve always eaten them. They bake better when formed as a ball and there’s no added flour or baking soda. If you pulse the chickpea mixture in the food processor just until it’s on the softer side of crumb-like, you’ll end up with a consistency that’s light when baked. They’ll also hold their shape well.
What I also like about baking falafel is that you can do up a whole baking sheet full, toss them in for 12-15mins, and walkaway.
I chose to use Serrano peppers as I like the heat with the herbs. Herbs are in abundance at my house during the summer months, so they make it into a lot of my recipes. I love the flavour of fresh dill, basil, parsley, and onion/chives together – so refreshing.
*Have some extra AquaFaba (chickpea water) leftover from making falafels? Try Power Macaroons!
- 1 - 540 ml can organic chickpeas *drain the aquafaba (chickpea water) into a container
- 2 tsp aquafaba
- 1-2 serrano peppers, seeded & finely chopped *or 1 large jalapeno
- 3 med./large garlic cloves, minced
- 5 green onions, chopped
- 1/2 cup curley parsley, chopped
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- pinch of cardamon
- 1 tsp arrowroot powder
- 2 cups unsweetened plant based yogurt
- 3/4 cup cucumber - grated, wrung out, & chopped
- 3-5 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup fresh dill, chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp dry mustard
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- pinch of pepper
*Don't rinse the chickpeas.
Add all of the prepared ingredients to a food processor. Pulse until the mixture becomes crumb-like, but a little on the softer side - moldable. Pulsing will give you more control over the falafel mixture consistency. If you blend on high for too long, it will turn into hummus. Chill in the fridge for at least 1hour.
Preheat the oven to 450*F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Take about a tbsp size amount (think golf ball) of the mixture and roll it into a ball. Place the ball onto the sheet. Repeat, spacing the falafels a couple inches apart.
Bake for 12mins, and then *broil for another 3-5mins on high until golden brown. Broiling will ensure the tops of the falafels are cooked & crispy. Remove from the oven and place the falafels on a cooling rack.
Once the cucumber is grated, take a towel or piece or paper towel, and place the cucumber in the centre. Over the sink, twist both sides of the towel and wring out any excess water.
In a bowl, add all of the ingredients. Stir well. Make any adjustments to your liking to taste. Refrigerate in an airtight container or serve. Good for uptown 3days.
~ I used whole wheat pitas, purple cabbage, grated carrot, and red leafy lettuce in addition to the fresh falafels & tzatziki.