December 5, 2011

Pistachio & Herb Falafels

I realize this post is a little "bright" of a dish compared to most of the hearty soups and desserts that you are eating right now, but I meant to post this a month ago, and, well now it's late. But, this is the perfect light and delicious recipe to balance out all the richness going around. This just so happens to be a (sort of new) family favorite. I originally found this recipe on Green Kitchen Stories blog, and completely changed it up to adapt to my taste buds, and ended up making it with a greek twist. It is a really simple vegetarian dinner, but I promise you will not miss the meat, not even for a second.

 The falafels are baked to perfection and burst with flavor from the nuts and herbs. Keeping ours gluten free, we wrapped it up in some delicious and crisp butter lettuce, but if you want a more hearty meal you could certainly wrap it all up in a good pita or flatbread. My mouth is actually watering as I write this because these are that tasty! It may seem like a strange dinner, and you may have doubts that your kids will eat this, but Emory absolutely loves them although he is a bit confused and call them waffles, but who cares, I was just glad he loved them so much. I hope you are having a great Holiday season, and enjoy this yummy meal!

Pistachio and Herb Falafels
This makes enough to feed 4-6 people. I used melon scooper, or a small cookie scoop to make them all an even size. You can make the dough mixture up ahead of time and keep in the fridge for a few hours before you start dinner. Enjoy!

For the Falafels:

1/3 cup fresh parsley (a handful)
1/3 cup fresh cilantro (a handful)
2 cups shelled pistachios, lightly toasted
1 can white (navy) beans , drained and rinsed well
2 cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed well
2 cloves garlic, peeled
3 Tbsp, Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Pinch of cumin
Salt and Pepper

Feta cheese, crumbles
Cucumber Dressing (Recipe Below)
Caramelized Red Onions (Recipe Below)
Fresh Herbs
Cucumber Salsa (Recipe Below)
Diced Tomatoes
Sauteed Zucchini (cut as much zucchini as you want into small dices, heat pan, toss with evoo, salt and pepper, and saute until browned, a few minutes)
Butter lettuce or pitas for wrapping 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a food processor, pulse the garlic and herbs together for a few seconds. Add in nuts and pulse a few times to break nuts down a bit. Add in the rest of the ingredients and pulse until mixture is almost smooth, leaving a few chunks for texture. Roll into balls and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Place in preheated oven and bake for about 30 minutes, turning them every ten or so, until they are browned and warmed through. Wrap up in lettuce or pitas, and enjoy!

Cucumber Dressing
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 small cloves garlic
1/2 large cucumber, or 1 small, peeled
3/4 cup plain greek yogurt
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/8 tsp dried oregano
pinch of cumin
1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
pinch of salt and pepper

In a small pan, over medium to high heat, add in the 2 Tbsp of olive oil and saute (whole) cloves of garlic for a few minutes until fragrant and the bite is taken off. 
In a blender or food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth and creamy. Add more seasonings to taste. 

Caramelized Red Onions
1 red onion , thinly sliced
2 Tsp olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper

In a skillet over medium-low heat, saute onions , low and slow, until they turn a caramel color, anywhere from 25-35 minutes. 

Cucumber Tomato Salsa
1/2 cucumber diced small
1/4 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
Pinch of salt and pepper
Pinch of cumin and oregano
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil

In a small bowl toss all ingredients to combine. For best taste, let sit for at least 30 minutes for flavors to combine


  1. I love falafel! These look delicious

  2. Like everything you do, this looks delicious! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!