I feel so very lucky to know so many lovely and talented people. When I think about some of the exceptional cooks/bloggers that have agreed to do guest posts here I am honored and so very happy to present them to all of you that stop by for a read. This blogger/cook and amazingly talented woman is one of my favorite people, she can make a die hard vegetable hater a veggie lover. Elaine’s gorgeous blog Foodbod is one that I have followed for a few years now, I love her recipes like this Middle Eastern Aubergine or her wonderful sourdough bread. She inspires with her creativty, amazes with her talent and I like to call her the vegetable whisperer, she can coax incredible flavor from the most humble of vegetables by adding a little of this and that and when she pulls that tray out of the oven you know the master has done her magic I know most of you know her and if you don’t please visit her blog and read about Elaine and how her mission to eat healthful and delicious food came about, you will love it as much as I do, I guarantee it. Take it away Elaine…..
What can I say about the lovely Suzanne that hasn’t already been said by her previous guest posters?? Nothing really, they’ve said it all so beautifully, I’ll just be repeating things..but hey, who cares?!
Suzanne is such a constant, supportive and complimentary food blogger; she always has time to visit and comment on people’s posts, and is always positive and interested in what people have cooked, asking questions, giving suggestions and being a lovely friend. And Suzanne is such a gifted cook that I always feel honoured when she likes my food, so I was happily surprised, and honoured, when she asked me if I would like to put together a guest post for her…I hope she likes it, and that her readers do too 🙂
The fact that we share a love of dogs only makes me like her more xx
I wanted to push myself and create something new for Suzanne so I bring you:
the joy of a homemade falafel mix..
Falafels are a middle eastern ‘pattie’, typically made with dried soaked chickpeas and they tend to be deep fried; they are very much middle eastern street food. I love falafels and, in particular, I love the flavours in the mix of ingredients and like applying it to other dishes. On this occasion I decided to experiment with fava beans, which are dried broad beans, in place of dried chickpeas – whichever you choose, do not use the cooked or canned versions; the success of falafels comes from using dried & soaked pulses, that all adds to their crunch. I have also oven baked my falafels which I think works well, but that’s not all, read on…
250g dried split fava beans, placed in a large bowl of water and soaked overnight
1 medium red onion, peeled and roughly chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 bunch flat leaf parsley
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 cayenne pepper (optional)
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt to taste
Flour of your choice as needed
Wash and drain the fava beans
Put everything EXCEPT the flour in a blender and chop to a chunky crumb
At this point I stored the mixture in a wrapped bowl in the fridge and let the flavours develop, then started to make things with it over the next few days. You could use it immediately depending on your plans.
My first use of the mixture creates a lovely brunch, lunch or dinner..a falafel crunch with spinach and eggs..
Put about a quarter of the falafel mixture in a pan with melted coconut oil, over a medium heat. As you cook it, turn it all over every so often, and it becomes lovely and crunchy and browned.
Once cooked, add a handful of baby spinach leaves, and once that is cooked without becoming mushy, make some spaces in the mix and cook eggs into the mix.
A sprinkle of grated cheese finishes it all off perfectly.. I ate mine directly from the pan – saves on washing up!!
For a other idea, how about a falafel quinoa goodness bowl?
First, spoon about a quarter of the falafel mixture again into a pan with olive oil over a medium heat.
Start to cook it through then add several spoons of cooked quinoa.
Cook the mixture until the fava beans are cooked and the mixture starts to crisp slightly.
This creates a lovely dish of tasty goodness on its own, perfect for me for lunch with some homemade dips.. …
or you could use it as a side dish or in place of something like rice. Or again add some eggs to the dish, or your choice of meat or fish.
And finally..the actual falafels..
These falafels are oven baked; I’ve never deep fried my falafels so I can’t tell you how well it does or doesn’t work, but I can tell you that they are very good when baked..
A quarter of the mixture formed 6 falafels
Add 1-2 tablespoons of flour (I used spelt flour but any all purpose plain flour will do) and bring the mixture together with your hands, it will create a ‘dough’
I use a falafel press to create my patties but you could easily split the mixture into 6 and create balls then flatten them to discs
Brush olive oil on both sides and place on parchment paper on baking tray
Bake at 200C for 10 minutes then turn them all over and bake for another 10 minutes
They come out lovely and crunchy 🙂
I enjoyed mine wrapped in lettuce leaves with tahini sauce and homous.
In the Middle East falafels would typically be served in flat bread wraps with salad and tahini sauce so the lettuce formed my ‘bread’.
I hope you like my falafels and other ideas for the mix. I think it could also be utilised as a ‘crumble’ topping over a lovely dish, or as a crumb on a piece of fish or meat. The possibilities are endless!
Thank you again to Suzanne for inviting me to appear on her lovely blog, I hope you all enjoyed a bit of my world 🙂