Bean-a-thon: Falafel Me.

Thought it’s a little belated, I’m still on my bean-a-thon kick.  I’m still working through the EONS of beans in my kitchen.  Its ridiculous, I just took a little ‘school and personal’ break from the challenge.  The end of last quarter was overhwelming.  So, I thought I’d bring it back with a big recipe: a triple threat.  Three kinds ‘o’ beans in 1 recipe.

After my falafel salad this weekend, I relit my love for all things falafel which I first began to love in Spain in 2007.

And then, when Abby commented that she was hoping for a falafel recipe, I decided that I had to put my ‘plan’ to make falafel into actual action.  And so, today was a falafelful Monday!

First things first, I soaked garbanzos, lentils and split dried peas – a cup of the primer, and about 1/2 cup each of the later two.  I put them in 4x the amount of water before I left for school at 8:30am, and when I got back from classes, a seminar, the gym and a long walk home in the beautiful spring weather at 3pm, everything but the garbanzos were ready to go.

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I let the food processor whirr away and grind my lentils and split peas.


Ground lentil and split pea mush!

And then, then I got to the garbanzos.  Oh, the garbanzos.  After attempting for about 5 minutes to process my garbanzos with no luck, I sent this to the twitterverse (@PhDStrides).


I got back a few good suggestions, but in the end I made things work…mostly.  I took all the garbanzos out of their little shells (yes there are little shells/coverings on each garbanzo bean).  And let them soak again for another two hours.  Then I took to my food processor again.  And the food processor whirred and whirred.  And ground up my garbanzos until…


Yes, my whirring garbanzos caused my little food processor to smoke.  The poor thing has seen much better days.  I think its 2 year life might be over…I’m kind of terrified to try using it again.  Can I use my little food processor again?


(Red arrow – site of the smoke stack.)

Anyways, garbanzo beans before and after food process whirring.

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Also added to the mix was fresh minced garlic, cumin, valentina hot sauce, chili powder, ginger powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, lemon juice, flour and olive oil.

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Then I rolled them into flattened patties and placed them on a baking sheet.


And then I baked them in an oven preheated at 475.  About 4-5 minutes on each side.

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And the falafel verdict?  I love my baked falafel!  While they were (surprisingly) a little  sunder spiced for my palate, I loved the texture, the crunch on the outside, and the soft inside, and the hints of flavor that were suggested.  What will I do next time?  Up the spice ante – specifically more cumin, hot sauce, chili powder and ginger.  Oh, and get a better, more powerful food processor.  Unless I hear otherwise (that I can still use it), mine will be headed towards the trash.  Poor little guy.

Alas, the recipe.  With the amount of spices I plan on adding next time Smile


  • 1 cup dried garbanzos
  • 1/2 cup dried lentils
  • 1/2 cup dried split peas
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tbsp hot sauce (I used Valentino)
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 – 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Sesame seeds for ‘crust’

Soak the garbanzos, lentils & split peas in 4x amount of water for about 8 hours (or over night.  Then process/grind them all (uncooked!).  For the garbanzos, I removed the shells from each bean individually, and then soaked them for an additional two hours.

Preheat the oven to 475.  Put the ground beans into a bowl.  Then, mix in the spices, flour, lemon juice, hot sauce, and olive oil.  Shape into about 1 1/2 inch diameter by 1 inch patties.  They should look like mini hamburgers.  Dip each side of the falafel into sesame seeds before placing on a lightly greased/lined cookie sheet.  I used a Silpat baking sheet on my cookie sheet – it worked like a charm!

Bake for about 4-5 minutes on each side, or until the outside is hard/crunchy, and the edges start turning a light golden brown.  Remove, let cool a bit, and dig in to falafel delight.  You can eat with a tahini sauce like they do in the Mediterranean, or you can eat them like me: by themselves, one at a time…  until they’re all gone Winking smile


Have you ever eaten anything out and then tried to recreate it at home?  What was it – and was your version, or the restaurant’s better? I do this all the time.  Case in point: falafel, I had falafel salad over the weekend.  I have also had chana masala at restaurants a number of times and then ambitiously made it myself.  Were they better?  Falafel, yes — though mine had a 1-up as mine weren’t fried…I don’t like fried food.  It’s a taste and stomach thing.  Chana masala, no.  Though, its much cheaper to make it on my own, and still delicious.


3 thoughts on “Bean-a-thon: Falafel Me.

  1. I’ve never had falafel. Way to make it at home! It looks yummy. 🙂 Sorry about the food processor smoking. Mine hasn’t done that before so no advice for ya there. Hopefully it’s still okay!

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