felafels with sesame yogurt dip

Did I tell you that we found a puppy? Oh yes. A little, lost, stray puppy & he is just the cutest thing in the world.

Guess what, my dog likes our cooking. Actually, he loves falafels. I know this because on the day we found him, we had made falafels for ‘clean monday’. We kept trying to feed him all sorts of things to get his little belly full, but when he smelt the falafels on the table, he went nuts. We gave in & gave him half of one. Trust me, half was more than enough, he’s only got a tiny little puppy belly…. which is actually getting pretty round now that I think about it.

That’s not all he loves, he’s got a thing for fruit too. Apples, bananas, melon, it’s crazy, and he actually chews his food properly instead of just swallowing it whole. Our dog, the food lover. I have to say, I’m impressed. We called him Sushi Roll (which we also substitute in for little Sashimi, Nagiri, or as Mel calls him… re Dude).

Enough about our puppy though, this isn’t a place where people come to read about our pets, you’re all here for the food… the pet is just a bonus, right?

Right, so, the food. Falafels. What can I say? I think I’ve got a soft sport for falafels. Actually, it’s a soft spot for anything middle eastern. All of those spices, flavors & smells. I think it’s just heavenly. It makes me think of Dubai & miss it pretty good. I’m not talking about Dubai how it is now, I’m talking about Dubai 20 years ago when it was still mostly desert, dunes & amazing beaches. Yes, it is safe to say I love the middle eastern cuisine.

Mel & I made this recipe back when we were still catering a few years ago. It was actually a huge success at the time. Well, it was a huge success with me any way. Every couple of weeks when we would make it, I undoubtedly always ended up eating half of them myself. That’s no small feat either since it yields a couple dozen at least! Still, I hope everyone loves it just as much as I did, do, will always. Yum!

Ingredients, felafel:
– 1kg chickpeas
– 1 courgette, grated
– 12 spring onions
– 60g bread crumbs
– 2 eggs
– 2 lemons, juice & zest
– 2 garlic cloves
– 4 tbs fresh coriander, chopped
– 4 tbs fresh parsley , chopped
– 60ml tahini paste
– 3 tsp ground coriander
– 3 tsp cumin
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– 1 tsp salt
– 1 tsp black pepper

Directions, felafel:
1. soak the chickpeas overnight in a large pot of water, strain them & replace the water before boiling.
2. boil the chickpeas for 45 minutes or until tender.
3. in a large food processor, combine all the ingredients & blend until the chickpeas are either a smooth paste, or there are still some coarse chunks. This is really up to your personal preference.
4. remove the ingredients from the processor, mix again to ensure everything is properly distributed, and adjust any seasoning. Cover the mixture & put it in the fridge for several hours before forming into balls, you want the flavors to meld.
5. roll the mixture into balls that are roughly somewhere in the middle between the size of a ping pong ball & a tennis ball.
6. bring a large pot of oil to 180°C & fry the balls a few at a time for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown.
7. Serve hot with the yogurt dipping sauce & some pita bread.

Ingredients, yogurt dip:
– 140g greek yogurt, full fat & plain
– 60ml olive oil
– 30 ml lemon juice
– 30 ml tahini
– 1 tbs fresh mint, chopped
– 1 pinch saffron

Directions, yogurt dip:
1. combine the ingredients in a bowl, mix well & leave in the fridge for several hours for the flavors to infuse.

…for more recipes from us, check out our archives.

…….and for anyone interested, this is our little Sashimi the night we found him

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