Welcome foodies and fellow culinary enthusiasts! Today, I want to introduce you to a delicious and unique street food recipe that will transport your taste buds right to the bustling streets of Egypt.
Introducing the mouth-watering Egyptian Falafel, a popular Middle Eastern delicacy that you can now easily make in the comfort of your own kitchen. Made with dried fava beans, this authentic falafel recipe is hearty, crispy on the outside, and fluffy on the inside.
But why settle for just any falafel sandwich when you can step it up a notch with our special falafel pita pockets? That’s right – this recipe not only includes instructions on how to make crispy falafel but also how to serve them in soft pita bread pockets for an extra layer of flavor and satisfaction.
Whether you’re a vegetarian or a meat lover, this recipe caters to all. And if you’re worried about it being too complicated and time-consuming to make, fret not as we have simplified the process just for you.
So come along with me on this culinary journey as I guide you through the tantalizing flavors of Egyptian street food. Let’s get cooking!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Attention all food lovers! Are you looking for a new and exciting recipe that will flavorfully tickle your taste buds? Look no further than the Egyptian Falafel – Pita Pocket Filler Recipe! Made with authentic Middle Eastern spices, dried fava beans, and other flavorful ingredients, this recipe is guaranteed to satisfy your cravings.
What makes this recipe so special is its crispy texture and mouth-watering aroma. Imagine biting into a warm, freshly made falafel pita sandwich filled with creamy tahini sauce and your favorite vegetables such as lettuce, tomatoes, and radishes. The blend of flavors and textures will leave you craving more!
Not only is it easy to make, but it’s also versatile. You can enjoy it as a quick snack or as a complete meal paired with couscous or sides such as dill pickles and fresh parsley. It’s perfect for any occasion and will be sure to impress anyone you serve it to.
But that’s not all – this recipe also provides a healthy alternative to traditional fast food options. Instead of unhealthy takeout food or fried snacks, try making these baked falafels at home! Loaded with protein from the fava beans and nutrients from fresh vegetables, this recipe is both flavorful and nutritious.
So what are you waiting for? Give this Egyptian Falafel – Pita Pocket Filler Recipe a try today! It is the perfect addition to your meal repertoire and sure to become one of your go-to favorites.
Before getting started with the recipe, make sure you have gathered all the essential Ingredients to get the best out of this Egyptian Falafel. Don’t worry about going shopping miles away, you might already have these Middle-Eastern ingredients in your pantry or grocery store.
For the ingredients, you will need:
Dried Fava Beans: The main ingredient for making this crispy falafel. Soak them overnight to prepare for the recipe.
Potato & Onion: You will need finely chopped peeled potatoes and one medium onion to create the smooth texture of falafel. If you prefer a coarser texture, feel free to skip the potato.
Garlic Cloves: Fresh garlic is a must for that signature Middle Eastern falafel taste. Crush it or mince in fine pieces depending on how strong you want the flavor.
Fresh Parsley & Green Onions: Add brightness and freshness to your dish by adding finely chopped fresh parsley and green onions. These not only impart flavor but also add color to your dish.
Ground Cumin & Coriander: A teaspoon of each of these exotic spices lend authentic flavors to your recipe. They add floral, earthy flavors that are unmistakably Middle Eastern.
Baking Soda: A leavening agent that helps in making the fluffy and light texture of the Falafel.
Cayenne Pepper, Black Pepper & Salt: Spices up your dish by adding a pinch of Cayenne pepper powder for a dash of heat balanced with black pepper and salt.
For serving, you will need:
Falafel Pita: Fill those hearty pita pockets with generously stuffed crispy falafel balls made from this recipe.
Tahini sauce: The creamy tahini sauce makes a perfect complement for any Egyptian dish. It adds nutty flavors and its consistency is perfect for drizzling over food.
You can find these easily available ingredients in any Middle Eastern store or even supermarkets nowadays. Gather these, and let’s get started building your own Egyptian Falafel Pita Sandwich!
The Recipe How-To
Now that we’ve covered the history and reasons why Egyptian Falafel is a popular cuisine in the Middle East, it’s time to get to the recipe. This recipe is easy to make and takes less than an hour. The ingredient list may seem long, but most of them are pantry staples found in a standard Middle Eastern kitchen.
- 1 cup Dried Fava Beans
- 1/2 Onion, diced
- 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 Potato, peeled and cubed
- 1/4 cup Fresh Parsley Leaves
- 2 Green Onions, chopped
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
- 1 teaspoon Ground Coriander
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
- Sesame Seeds for garnish
Note: The dried fava beans are essential for the authentic Egyptian falafel taste, so I wouldn’t recommend substituting them. If you can’t find them in your local store, try checking online or a Middle Eastern market.
How to Make the Egyptian Falafel:
Step 1: In a large mixing bowl, soak the dried fava beans overnight with enough water to cover them.
Step 2: The next day, drain and rinse the beans thoroughly.
Step 3: In a food processor, pulse together the drained fava beans with onion, garlic, potato, parsley, green onions, salt, ground cumin, ground coriander, baking soda until the mixture forms a thick paste. Be sure not to overmix; otherwise, it will become hummus-like consistency.
Step 4 : Pour mixture into a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least an hour to firm up.
Step 5 : Meanwhile, preheat your oven to bake at °350 F (180C)
Step 6 : Shape the mixture into small balls about one inch wide.
Step 7 : Place on parchment paper lining baking sheet and brush with oil.
Step 8 : Bake in the oven for about fifteen minutes or until golden brown.
Step 9 : Remove from oven and let cool for five minutes.
Step 10: Fill each pita pocket with falafel balls and desired toppings like lettuce, sliced tomatoes, dill pickle ,sliced radishes and sesame seeds sprinkled on the top .
Egyptian Falafels are best served fresh out of oven as they will start losing their crispiness if they sit too long. However, if you have leftovers or plan ahead for quick lunch prep baked falafels can be kept in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to three days or freeze up till one month.
Substitutions and Variations
Are you looking to spice things up in the kitchen? Here are some substitutions and variations to help you give the classic Egyptian falafel pita a delicious twist:
– Lettuce lovers can add greens to their sandwich by layering crispy lettuce leaves to the pita pockets. This healthy addition adds texture and fresh crunch.
– Dill pickle fiends out there can add a few slices of tangy dill pickles along with tomato slices and fresh parsley for extra flavor.
– Radishes can be thinly sliced and added to your sandwich for a pop of peppery flavor.
– For extra crunch, sprinkle sesame seeds on top of your falafel before cooking them. Toasted sesame seeds add a nutty aroma and extra texture to your dish.
– If you’re making falafels from scratch, use baking powder instead of baking soda. Add more black pepper, cumin, or coriander depending on your preferred taste.
– Green onion goes great with falafel! Chop thinly and mix it into the dough along with garlic cloves for boosting the flavors.
– Cayenne pepper or sumac can be mixed into the tahini sauce for an added zing!
– Try different falafel fillings by stuffing them with ground beef or even couscous for vegans out there!
So go ahead and experiment with these substitution ideas and make this easy falafel pita recipe even more special. The possibilities are endless, so let your creativity run wild in the kitchen!
Serving and Pairing
There are a plethora of options when it comes to serving and pairing your delicious Egyptian Falafel pita pockets!
Firstly, you can stuff your falafel pita with some classic toppings like lettuce, tomatoes, and thinly-sliced radishes. Add a dash of freshly-chopped dill pickle and fresh parsley to take the flavor to the next level. If you love some extra heat, sprinkle on some cayenne pepper or black pepper for an extra punch.
One of my personal favorite pairings is the creamy tahini sauce that complements the crispy falafel perfectly. To make the sauce, simply whisk some tahini paste with water until it has a smooth consistency. Add in minced garlic cloves, salt, ground cumin, and coriander to make it even more flavorful.
If you want to take your falafel pita sandwich experience up another level altogether, try making a Hawawshi! This authentic Egyptian food is a delectable treat consisting of baked or grilled pita bread filled with ground beef or couscous mixed with spices like cumin and paprika.
Lastly, you can never go wrong with serving your Egyptian Falafel Pita with some scrumptious Middle Eastern dessert delicacies like Aish Baladi! This traditional Egyptian bread has a fluffy texture and is usually sprinkled with sesame seeds. It is sure to complete your meal experience and leave your guests feeling fully satisfied.
With these delectable serving suggestions abundant in flavor, your falafel pita sandwich will surely transport you to the streets of Egypt in no time!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
When it comes to Egyptian Falafel, you want to ensure you can stock up on these tasty treats for days to come. Luckily, this recipe is perfect for making ahead, storing and reheating when you’re ready for a quick and easy meal.
To start, let your falafel cool down completely before storing in an airtight container. This can be done at room temperature or by leaving them in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes. Once cooled, they will keep fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
When it comes to reheating your Egyptian Falafel, there are a few options depending on your preference. Firstly, you can simply reheat them in the oven at 250°F for 5-7 minutes until they are heated through and crispy once again. Alternatively, you can microwave them for 15-30 seconds, then finish them off in the oven or toaster oven for an added crispness.
If you want to prepare your falafel ahead of time and freeze them, this is also possible with this recipe. Simply place cooked falafel into a freezer-safe plastic bag and remove as much air as possible before sealing tightly. Falafel can be successfully frozen for up to 2 months. To reheat frozen falafel, let them thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating using one of the above methods.
Preparing and preserving Egyptian Falafel has never been easier thanks to this make-ahead, storing and reheating guide. Your pita pockets will be full of delicious crispy falafel whenever the cravings hit!
Tips for Perfect Results
Egyptian falafel is a popular Middle Eastern street food that has won the hearts of food lovers across the globe. However, making crispy and perfectly cooked falafel can be a bit challenging for some cooks. Don’t worry, I have some tips that will help you achieve perfect and delectable falafel every time you make this authentic Egyptian recipe. Here are some suggestions to take your falafel to the next level.
1. Soak your dried fava beans overnight
It’s important to soak your dried fava beans overnight with baking soda to achieve perfectly textured falafel with a crispy exterior and moist interior. This step helps soften the beans and provides an excellent base for the chickpeas or potato mixture.
2. Blend ingredients in small batches
To obtain a well-mixed paste, combine all the ingredients except for fava beans in small batches (use 1 cup measurement as a guide) and blend them until smooth.
3. Use medium-hot oil for deep frying
Using medium-hot oil (around 350°F/177°C) helps cook the falafel evenly from outside and inside, creating a perfect crispy texture without burning the outer layer.
4. Seal your pita sandwich firmly
Be sure to fill your falafel pita pockets with lettuce, tomatoes, fresh parsley, dill pickles, sesame seeds, radishes or green onions before adding ta’ameya or falafel balls into it. Once done, close each pocket firmly to prevent the delicious stuffing from falling out.
5. Serve with tahini sauce
Tahini sauce is an essential addition to any Egyptian falafel dish as it complements the spicy and zesty flavours created by cumin, cayenne pepper or ground coriander. Drizzle the creamy tahini dressing over your falafels to give them a velvety texture while balancing out the salty with sweet tastes.
By following these tips, you will be able to prepare easy but authentic Egyptian falafel that everyone will love. It’s also worth exploring making variations like adding ground beef, couscous or even using baked falafel instead of deep-fried ones for a more healthy option!
As you venture into the realm of Egyptian falafel, there may be some questions that arise. The following Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) address common queries and concerns that cooks have when learning how to perfect this dish. Don’t hesitate to read on – the answers may surprise you!
What is Egyptian falafel made of?
One of the beloved street foods across the Middle East is falafel, known as ta’ameya in Egypt. While ground chickpeas are commonly used in falafel recipes throughout the region, dried fava beans are the preferred choice in Egypt. A delicious combination of falafel, pita bread, tomato, onions, and tahini sauce makes for a mouthwatering dish.
Why is Egyptian falafel green?
The falafel found in Egypt stands out due to its vibrant green color and distinct taste, which differs from the typical falafel one might find in the United States. Interestingly, the falafel in Egypt is made with peeled and split beans rather than chickpeas.
What is the difference between Taamia and falafel?
The Egyptian taameya and falafel differ mainly in their ingredient selection. While falafel is made using dried chickpeas, taameya utilizes the more modest fava bean. Consequently, taameya possesses a more tender and delicate texture compared to its chickpea counterpart.
Did ancient Egyptians eat falafel?
The origins of falafel remain a point of debate among scholars and historians. Some suggest that the dish has roots dating back to the Egyptian Copts over 1,000 years ago, while others believe it originated in India during the 6th century. However, the most widely accepted theory is that falafel was invented in the late 19th century as a modern dish.
This Egyptian Falafel recipe is truly a treat! It will take you on a culinary journey to the Middle East that you would not want to miss. Making your own falafel at home is incredibly easy and it’s worth it, trust me. The fresh ingredients, Arabic spices, and creamy tahini sauce make this recipe stand out from any other pita sandwich recipe.
Now that you have all the tips and tricks, ingredient list and the how-to on making the perfect Egyptian Falafel recipe, it’s time for you to put your chef’s hat on and give this recipe a try. Your taste buds will thank you for indulging in such an authentic and tasty street food from Egypt.
So what are you waiting for? Grab your friends and family, gather around the kitchen and whip up a batch of crispy falafels. I guarantee that this easy falafel pita sandwich recipe will become one of your favorite go-to meals!
Egyptian Falafel - Pita Pocket Filler Recipe
- 2 cups dried fava beans
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 large potato, peeled and quartered
- 6 garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil (for deep frying)
- 3 large green onions, chopped small
- 3/4 cup dried breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup deep fried dried onions
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 cup sesame seeds, lightly roasted
- 4 large radishes, sliced
- 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
- 1 large tomatoes, diced
- 1 large dill pickle, diced
- 1 medium jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
- 6 whole 6 1/2 inch pita bread
- 1 cup finely shredded lettuce (, of your choice)
- 1/2 teaspoon beau monde seasoning
- In a large-size saucepan, add fava beans and cover with water; bring to boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 3 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let beans soak overnight.
- When ready to use, drain.
- In a small saucepan, add quartered potatoes, cover with water and cook until done; drain.
- In a food processor or blender, process fava beans, onion, cooked potato and garlic cloves until smooth.
- Add coriander, cumin, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper and process for a few seconds to blend well.
- Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl.
- Add chopped green onions, bread crumbs, deep fried dried onions, and baking soda; mix well to incorporate.
- With dampened hands, form mixture into balls the size of walnuts.
- Place on a lightly floured surface and flatten the formed balls slightly into patties.
- Measure roasted sesame seeds into a soup bowl.
- Dip flattened fava patties into sesame seeds, turn over to coat lightly with sesame seeds.
- In a large frying pan, heat vegetable oil to medium-high heat.
- Carefully drop fava patties into hot oil and deep-fry for 2 minutes, turn over and deep-fry for another 1 to 2 minutes or until patties are cooked through and golden brown.
- Remove from oil with a slotted spoon onto paper toweling to drain.
- In a medium-size mixing bowl, add sliced radishes, chopped fresh parsley, diced tomato, diced dill pickle and diced jalapeño pepper and mix well.
- Wrap paper toweling around each individual flat bread or pita bread, place individually in microwave oven and microwave on HIGH (full power) for 30 seconds.
- Microwave remaining pitas in the same manner.
- Remove and cut pita at one end to form a pocket.
- Stuff 3 or 4 fava patties in pocket.
- Then spoon about 3 tablespoons of prepared vegetable mix into the pocket.
- Top with finely shredded lettuce and sprinkle with Beau Monde seasoning or you may use Seasoning salt.
- Serve immediately.
- You can also use canned fava beans but I prefer the dried fava beans the best.
- Note: Deep fried dried onions are available in most East Indian Grocery Stores. These are the best onions to use as they are crispier and crunchier than the ones that you can buy in cans.