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Serves: 4
If they like it, it serves 4 otherwise  - thinking face emoji
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Totaltime: 40 minutes

These bite-sized balls of fried chickpeas (or fava beans) probably originated in Egypt, but are now claimed as a national dish in at least four Middle Eastern countries. Israel,Egypt,Palestine and Lebanon. Canned chickpeas contain more moisture requiring additional flour. The recipe is great as an appetizer or part of a Mideastern meal.


  • 1 cup dried chickpeas
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 tablespoon salt
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 cup chopped onion
    2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
    2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/2-1 teaspoon dried hot red pepper
    4 cloves of garlic
    1 teaspoon cumin
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    4-6 tablespoons flour
    Soybean or vegetable oil for frying
    Chopped tomato for garnish
    Diced onion for garnish
    Diced green bell pepper for garnish
    Tahina sauce
    Pita bread


  • 1. Put the chickpeas in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover them by at least 2 inches Mix in 1 tsp baking soda and 1 T. salt. Let soak 10 to 12 hours then drain. Transfer chickpeas to a pot. Cover with water. Bring to a boil. Remove the foam that forms and simmer 10 minutes. chickpeas should be crisp and firm. Drain chickpeas.
    2. Heat olive oil in a frying pan and add onions. Sir and cook for 5 to 8 minutes.
    Place the drained chickpeas and the onions in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the parsley, cilantro, salt, hot pepper, garlic, and cumin. Process until blended but not pureed.
    3. Sprinkle in the baking powder and 4 tablespoons of the flour, and pulse. You want to add enough flour so that the dough forms a small ball and no longer sticks to your hands. Turn into a bowl and refrigerate, covered, for several hours.
    4. Form the chickpea mixture into 2 1/2-to-3-inch disks.
    5. Heat 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees in a deep pot or wok and fry 1 disk to test. If it falls apart, add a little flour. Then fry about 6 disks at once for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Stuff half a pita with falafel disks, chopped tomatoes, onion, green pepper, and pickled turnips. Drizzle with tahina thinned with water.
    NOTE: Egyptians omit the cilantro and substitute fava beans for the chickpeas.
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