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MIDDLE EASTERN FALAFEL - CHICK PEA, GARABANZO OR CECE DEEP FRIED BALLS.

A favorite throughout the Middle East. Actually it is the National dish of Israel.



Falafel, about the size of a Ping Pong ball is eaten like a finger food snack, filled into a pita sandwich, filled with a salad and yogurt and even cooked in a soup. The Middle East, despite their animosity between each others countries, tribes, and religions are in a sense connected to each other at the hip with "Falafel".


RECIPE PRINTED FROM: THEGUTSYGOURMET.NET©

INGREDIENTS:  Serves 1-2

•  2 cups dried chickpeas (about ⅓ pound)
•  4 scallions (white and green parts), cleaned and minced
•  1 tablespoon minced garlic
•  ¼ cup minced fresh parsley
•  1 tablespoon fresh mint, coarsely chopped
•  1 teaspoon minced hot green chili (like jalapeno)
•  1 teaspoon salt
•  1 ½ tsp ground cumin
•  1 tsp ground coriander
•  1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
•  3 tablespoons warm water
•  Light olive oil for deep-frying


DIRECTIONS:

1.   Place dried chickpeas in a bowl and cover with cold water. Soak for at least 12 hours and up to 15
      hours. 

2.   When ready to cook, drain the chickpeas and place them in a food processor. Add scallions, garlic,
      parsley, mint, chili,  salt, cumin, and coriander. Mix baking with the 3 tablespoons warm water 
      and add mixture to food processor. Process until smooth. 

3.   Transfer mixture into a small bowl, cover, and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Pour the oil to a depth of
      2 inches in a heavy saucepan or wok. Heat to 375ºF.   When the falafel mixture is chilled, roll into
      16 Ping-Pong-ball-sized balls.

4.   Slip a few at a time into the hot oil, making sure they don't stick to the bottom.  Cook, turning, for
      about 6 minutes, or until the balls are a dark, even brown on all sides. Remove with slotted spoon
      and drain on paper towels. 

5.   Serve either in sandwiches or as a falafel first course.

6.   Serve with a dolyp of yogurt sauce.



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