This recipe is pretty close to as authentic as one can get. I used dried chickpeas, fresh herbs, spices, and made with good energy!! I actually made my very first authentic falafel with a street vendor in Palestine a few years ago. He could put out 20 in like seconds and it took me 15 seconds or so to make just one!! hahaha A local bought my first ones and gave me a nod and a grin as she ate my little Middle Eastern delicacies!! My teacher was 30 years younger than me and a ‘pro’! Oh, he was very very very patient as well!! A very memorable experience.

2 cups dried chickpeas (DO NOT use canned or cooked chickpeas)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup fresh parsley leaves, stems removed
3/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, stems removed
1/2 cup fresh dill, stems removed
1 small onion, quartered
5 garlic cloves, peeled
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1 teaspoon baking poweder
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
Oil for frying

1. You need 1 day in advance. Place the chickpeas and baking soda in a large bowl filled with cold water to cover the chickpeas (by about 2 inches). Soak overnight for around 24 hours. Chickpeas do not want to be hard. Drain the chickpeas completely and pat them dry.
2. Add the chickpeas, herbs, onion, garlic, and spices to a food processor or blender. Pulse in small increments of time until all is well combined forming the falafel mixture.
3. Place the falafel mixture into a container and cover tightly. Place in the fridge for around 1 hour or up to one night until ready to cook.
4. Just before frying, add the baking powder and sesame seeds to the falafel mixture. Stir with a spoon.
5. Scoop tablespoonfuls of the falafel mixture an form into patties (1/2 inch in thickness each). It helps to have wet hands when forming the patties/balls. You can also use an ice cream scoop to form the balls. You will have to make sure they are firm.
6. Fill a medium saucepan with 3 inches of oil. Heat oil on medium-high heat until it bubbles softly. Carefully place the falafel patties into the hot oil and fry for about 3 to 5 minutes or until crispy and brown on the outside. Do not overcrowd the patties.
7. Place the cooked falafel on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil.
8. Serve hot with a tahini sauce or hummus. Use a pita to make a sandwich with falafel, arugula, tomato, cucumbers, and tahini sauce (or tzatziki). Click here for a Pita Bread recipe. Fresh pita and falafel is just absolutely heaven!!!!

*NOTE: You can bake the falafel in a 350 F degree oven for around 15-20 minutes. I supposed an Air Fryer will work. Look online for a time frame. I would give the falafel patties a coating of olive oil before baking or air frying. Also, turn them midway through. Make sure your oil is at 375 degrees F for frying. Do a test one first. And remember, you can only use dried chickpeas!!!! DO NOT use canned or cooked chickpeas. I cannot stress this enough!! I usually soak my chickpeas for a good 24 hours.

I always fry up a huge batch and snack on them with hummus or in a pita pocket!! YUM YUM YUM!!

Cheers, Drew Frederic

Published by Drew Frederic

Photographer, Artist, Poet, Chef, and Photojournalist.

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