Falafel may seem like a mysterious food, but it is actually quite simple to make at home. Chickpeas, cumin, and parsley are the main ingredients that give falafel it’s distinguishable flavor. Beyond that, there are endless ways to customize this traditional middle eastern snack. In this recipe, we added beets to the mixture for a festive holiday twist – RED falafel bites! Aside from the color, the beets also add a rich earthy flavor. And even if you’re not a huge beet fan, we can guarantee you’ll still love these (speaking from experience).
To keep this appetizer simple and healthy we decided to pan fry these babies, instead of deep frying. You can still achieve a deep golden color by pan frying the falafel. Plus, this way you don’t have to deal with a huge pot of hot oil. Win! Instead of making traditional falafel balls, you’ll make mini falafel patties that are perfect for dipping, dunking and smothering in tasty toppings. They mini falafel patties will also stay put on pita, so get creative and dress them up however you like (pictured here: pita, hummus, kale, parsley and carrots). Happy snacking and happy holidays!
- 1 can of chickpeas (15oz or 1 3/4 cup), rinsed, drained and patted dry
- 8oz cooked beets (about 4 small beets), quartered and patted dry
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup parsley, loosely packed
- 1 tablespoon Blue Moose of Boulder Green Chile Hummus
- 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1-3 – 2/3 cup all purpose flour
- Oil for pan frying
- Serve with: pita/flatbread/naan, kale, hummus, chopped parsley and julienned rainbow carrots
- Place chickpeas, beets, oats, parsley, hummus, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper in a large food processor.
- Pulse ingredients until a cohesive, but not fully smooth mixture is created. You might need to scrape the bowl a few times while processing.
- Taste the mixture and more salt if desired.
- Empty into a bowl and fold in 1/3 cup flour. The mixture should be soft but not wet or stiff. Add more flour if needed.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (up to overnight).
- Line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper. Then form mini patties by rolling about 2 tablespoons of the mixture together and gently flatten between your palms to about 1/2 inch thick. Place the patty on the baking sheet and repeat. If the mixture seems to wet before rolling, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Drizzle 2 tablespoons of oil into a 9-12 inch pan and heat over medium heat.
- Once hot, add about 6-8 patties to the pan and cook for about 5 minutes on each side, or until deep golden brown.
- Repeat until are mini falafels are cooked, adding more oil as necessary.
- Serve alone, with hummus for dipping or on pita with accompaniments!