First made in 1992 from our old favorite Horn of the Moon Cookbook (pp 152 & 153). It’s very good but fair warning – it’s a lot of work! It makes a large amount so plan on freezing half of the falafel balls and half the lemon tahini sauce too. With thanks to Salt on the Table for transcribing the recipe.

2 c dried chick peas or 3 cans
4 c water

1 T olive oil
1 onion, minced
8 cloves garlic, pressed
1/2 t salt
1 t ground cumin
1 t turmeric
1/2 t ground coriander
1/4 t cayenne pepper (scant)
1/2 c tahini
1 c breadcrumbs
1 c whole wheat flour, split
3 – 4 c canola oil for frying

4 pitas
1 cucumber, sliced thin
2 tomatoes, sliced
small red onion, thinly sliced into crescents
a green or red pepper, thinly sliced
Lemon Tahini Sauce (recipe follows)

If using dried chick peas, soak them overnight in 4 cups of water. Cook until very soft the next day – it takes 2-3 hours. You will end up with 4 cups of cooked chick peas.

While the beans are cooking, make the lemon tahini sauce and store in the fridge.

Put a skillet over medium heat and add the 1 T olive oil and saute onions and garlic. When the onions begin to brown add the spices, mix well cook for a minute more and turn the heat off.

Drain and mash the chick peas finely (or use your food processor which is super fast and easy). Put the mashed beans in a large bowl with the tahini, breadcrumbs and 1/2 cup of the flour. Add the onion, garlic and spices mixture and mix well.

Heat the oil in a large, deep pan over medium to medium-high heat.

Put the remaining 1/4 cup whole wheat flour in a small bowl.
Make a ball (about the size of a small golf ball) with the mix and lightly roll it in the flour. Drop it in the oil. The oil should boil and foam around the ball without foaming up too much. If it foams up a lot, then the oil might be too hot so turn it down. If it doesn’t start sizzling, then turn it up a bit. When you have found the right temperature, add the rest of the balls and cook until a dark golden brown color,watching closely. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate.

Serve in the pitas with the vegetables and lemon tahini sauce.

Lemon Tahini Sauce
Makes 2 cups

1 1/2 c tahini
2/3 to 3/4 c lemon juice
1 t ground cumin
2 t turmeric
pinch cayenne pepper
6 cloves of garlic, pressed
2 T tamari
1 c water
freshly ground black pepper
1 c minced parsley

Add lemon juice, spices and garlic to tahini in a medium sized bowl. Blend well and then add the water and mix in the tamari and parsley. Add a little more water if the sauce seems too thick. Freezes well.


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