1 cup dried chickpeas
1/2 large onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 jalapeno pepper
4 cloves of garlic
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 tablespoons flour
Vegetable oil for frying
Chopped tomato for garnish
Diced onion for garnish
Diced green bell pepper for garnish
Put the chickpeas in a large bowl and add enough cold water to cover them by at least 2 inches. Let soak overnight, then drain.
Place the onion, parsley, cilantro, salt, jalapeno pepper, garlic, and cumin in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and process till well chopped. Add the drained, uncooked chickpeas and process until blended but not pureed. Mixture should still be a little rough
Sprinkle in the baking powder and 4 tablespoons 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.
If deep frying, form the chickpea mixture into balls about the size of walnuts, or use a falafel scoop, available in Middle-Eastern markets. Then heat 3 inches of oil to 375 degrees in a deep pot or wok and fry 1 ball to test. If it falls apart, add a little flour. Then fry about 6 balls at once for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
If cooking in a non-stick pan, form into small patties. Heat non-stick pan over medium-high heat and lightly spray with cooking oil. Cook until patties brown, flip and cook next side.
To serve, stuff half a pita with falafel balls, chopped tomatoes, onion, and green pepper. Top with tzaziki (recipe following) or drizzle with tahini thinned with water.
16 ounces (2 cups) strained Greek yogurt
4-10 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons dill, chopped
1 tablespoon mint, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons lemon juice
Combine oil and lemon juice in a medium bowl. Fold in yogurt, making sure it completely mixes in with oil. Add garlic, according to your taste. Mix in cucumber and stir until well blended. Serve chilled.