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Falafel Burgers w/ a Cool Cucumber Salad! GF, V!

Posted Oct 23 2012 10:13pm

A NYC-inspired meal! I remember having my 1st falafel with my friend T, on the Upper West Side, near Columbia. Falafel is King in NYC, with food trucks all over Manhattan serving up these delectable, deep-fried chickpea balls. Well, needless to say, I baked mine, and made them super yummy and Happy Tummy approved!

And they’re Gluten and Dairy Free, Maker’s Diet friendly, and have a Vegan option!

Here’s what you need:

1 can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained and rinsed
3 garlic cloves
1/2 red onion
big handful cilantro
~1 Tbsp fresh parsley (or more if you love parsley, I don’t)
juice of 1 1/2 lemons
1 tsp EVOO
1 tsp cumin
big pinch of salt & pepper
2 Tbsp oat flour
1 egg (Vegan option: 1 flax/chia egg)

Put all those into a food processor and combine. Then, on an olive-oil-sprayed baking sheet, divide the “batter” into 4 patties. (Don’t try to shape them with your hands, it won’t work…I used a 1/3 cup measuring cup.) Place in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes, flipping half way through.  I finished them off on a frying pan (sprayed with olive oil), and they got a nice crust on them, but 3 of 4 broke when I went to flip. Try this at your own risk! :)

While your patties are baking, make your tahini sauce.  Tahini  is a middle eastern condiment, that is made of ground up sesame seeds. It’s sesame seed paste, but more “liquidy.” This sauce is AMAZING on the falafel, not so much on its own. Something fabulous happens to it when you pair it with the chickpeas. Trust me.

1 Tbsp Tahini
1 small grated garlic clove
1/2 tsp grated onion
1/2 tsp minced parsley
juice of 1 lemon
water to thin out…about 2 Tbsp

Stir those all together. It won’t taste great on its own, but slathered on the burger, it is spectacular. I promise! PS, this doesn’t make very much– enough for 3-4.

With this burger, I served a fantastic, cool cucumber salad. This salad is actually meant to go in the burger when you eat it! You see, falafel is traditionally served in a pita, so the salad can nestle right inside the pocket. But, since my falafel was in burger form, I served the salad on the side.

1/2 cucumber, peeled and seeded
red pepper, diced
2 Tbsp red onion, minced
handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt & pepper
1 1/2 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped

Combine, chill, and enjoy!

I really enjoyed this meal. My dad liked it, but wanted more “meat.” But for my tastes, it was delicious. It had a fresh, middle eastern flare with the cilantro and the parsley. I love the combination of the nutty tahini sauce with the bright, creamy burger, and the cool, refreshing tomatoes and cucumber. Finally, there were great textures going on here. The temperature differences between the burger and the salad, and then the bright, crunchiness of the salad was just superb.

Have you ever eaten from a food truck?!

Until tomorrow!

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