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Author Notes: I used this make this a pita sandwich, but after getting over-zealous with the stuffing and having it fall apart one too many times, I realized that it's even better in salad form. I based the recipe off of Mark Bittman's baked falafel but added some inauthentic ingredients: nutritional yeast, which you can find in bulk bins at Whole Foods, and asafoetida, which is sold at Indian grocery stores or online. I borrow the double-coating technique from the Crab Cakes with Basil Aioli recipe at Epicurious. —pantryhero
For the falafel:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 15.5-oz. can chickpeas, drained, liquid reserved
- 1/4 cup chickpea flour, divided
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 2 garlic cloves, microplaned or finely minced
- 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
- 1/3 cup finely chopped white or yellow onion
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground corinader
- 1/2 teaspoon (generous) kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 cup plain dry breadcrumbs
Putting it all together:
- 1/4 cup well-stirred tahini
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 garlic cloved, mircoplaned or finely minced
- 6 cups finely shredded green cabbage
- 8 or so good-sized radishes, trimmed and cut into matchsticks
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
- 4 pita breads
- Spread the olive oil and vegetable oil evenly into a baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 375º.
- Pulse the drained chickpeas in a food processor until finely ground.
- Put the ground chickpeas in a medium bowl. Add 1 tbsp. of the chickpea flour and then the rest of the falafel ingredients except the plain dry breadcrumbs (so, nutritional yeast through baking soda). Mix well.
- Put your oiled pan in the oven to get nice and hot while you shape the falafel.
- Place the remaining 3 Tbsp. chickpea flour on a small plate or shallow dish. Divide the falafel mixture into 16 evenly-sized patties, and coat each patty in the chickpea flour, gently brushing off the excess. Set the patties aside on a cutting board as you coat them.
- Place the plain dry breadcrumbs on a small plate or shallow dish. Beat or whisk the reserved chickpea liquid until thick and foamy, like egg whites. Use a pastry brush to brush each patty all over with a little bit of whipped chickpea liquid, and then coat both sides lightly in the dry breadcrumbs. Set the patties aside on a cutting board as you coat them.
- Once all of the patties are coated in flour and crumbs, use a oven mitt! to take your hot pan out of the preheated oven. Place the patties in the pan (the oil will sizzle) and bake for about 10 minutes on each side, flipping once.
- To serve, make a tahini sauce by stirring together the tahini, water, and garlic. Season to taste with salt. Also, toast the pitas. Then toss together the cabbage, radishes, and cilantro, place the warm falafel on top, drizzle with the dressing, and finish with pieces of your toasted pita. Make sure to get a little bit of everything in each bite.