Well hello hello! Happy Saturday! Anyone have any fun plans this memorial weekend? We have a fairly quiet weekend planned but we hope to work out in the yard (in between the bouts of rain forecasted), maybe get a bike ride in, and get a few other things done around the house. It should be a productive and relaxing weekend yet again.
I can happily say that I am officially out of my food funk. I know that if I want to continue to be creative in the kitchen I need to take a small amount of time and PLAN out our meals before the week, buy the appropriate groceries, and be realistic when planning. I find it realistic to have three meals planned out for the week(days) so that I’m not overwhelmed at the thought of making some thing every night, and then on the nights where I have nothing planned, we can eat leftovers or do our own thing. This has been working out really well.
The last recipe on my meal planning agenda for this past week was…
Falafel is a traditional Middle Eastern food made from ground chickpeas, herbs, and spices formed into patties, which is often deep-fried, and usually served in a pita or flatbread and topped with veggies and a tahini sauce.
I love these little patties, but you all know I’m not about to go deep-frying my falafel, so I decided to bake them in the oven instead.
I used a family recipe as a guide to my falafel recipe, and created some seriously delish and extraordinarily healthy little bites.
I started by thoroughly rinsing and draining a can of garbanzo beans (aka chickpeas). Then I tossed them into my food processor along with parsley, cilantro, garlic, almond flour (I made them gluten-free), lemon juice, cumin, paprika, salt, pepper, and the special guest ingredient….KALE. I had to sneak just one more veggie in there. 😉 I pulsed these along in the food processor until they reached a paste-like consistency. Detailed recipe below.
Using my hands, I shaped small handfuls of the mixture into patties which I placed on a lightly sprayed cooking sheet. I sprayed the tops of the falafel with olive oil spray and popped them in a 400°F oven for 20 minutes, turning the little guys half way through.
We didn’t have any pita pockets or wraps at home, and we were running low on lettuce too, so I made an impromptu base for my falafel using the remains of an iceberg lettuce head, broccoli slaw, tomatoes, and green olives.
I plated the falafel on top of the salad, spritzed it with some fresh lemon juice, and topped it with yogurt sauce. The yogurt sauce was made from Greek yogurt, cumin, garlic powder, and lemon juice, but I actually wasn’t really feeling it so I ended up taking it off hence the reason I’m not going to share that recipe with you all. Sorry.
The flavor of the falafel was right on point. The texture was slightly soft, and the flavor combination from the herbs and spices tasted perfect. I enjoyed them on the salad, but next time I make these I really want to throw them into a whole grain tortilla and top it with tomato, lettuce, possibly some pickled veggies, and maybe a drizzle of tahini-based dressing. But really, I can’t complain about the way I ate them last night, because they tasted great.
|Baked Falafel with Kale (GF)|| |
- 3 garlic cloves, quartered
- 3 Tbsp cilantro
- ¼ cup parsley, chopped
- ½ cup kale
- 2 cups chickpeas (or 1-15 ounce can)
- ¼ cup almond flour
- 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- ½ Tbsp ground cumin
- ¾ tsp paprika
- a pinch of salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare a baking sheet with aluminum foil and a light coat of olive oil.
- Add all ingredients into food processor and process until mixture resembles a paste-like consistency.
- Use hands to shape small handfuls of mixture into falafel patties and place onto prepared pan.
- Spray the tops of the falafel with olive oil.
- Bake for 20 minutes, turning once half-way through baking time.
- Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes before plating.
- Serve on top of a salad, in a whole grain pita wrap, or in a whole grain tortilla with tomatoes, lettuce, and tzatzilki sauce if you wish.
These could also be enjoyed as an afternoon snack! They can be eaten warm or cold and the leftovers taste just great as the first day you made them.
Question of the day: Did you make any fun recipes last week?