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Falafel – Easy Falafel Recipe, How to Make Falafel

December 1, 2010 by  
Filed under Middle Eastern

Recipe: Falafel Recipe

Summary: Falafel (play /fəˈlɑːfəl/; Arabic: فلافل‎, Listeni /falāfil/) is a ball or patty made from ground chickpeas and/or fava beans. Falafel is usually served in a pita, which acts as a pocket, or wrapped in a flat bread known as lafa. The falafel balls are topped with salads, pickled vegetables and hot sauce, and drizzled with tahini-based sauces. Falafel balls may also be eaten alone as a snack or served as part of a mezze. Generally accepted to have first been made in Egypt, where the dish is widely known as طعمية (ta’amiya) in the Cairo dialect, falafel has become a dish eaten throughout the Middle East. The Copts of Egypt claim to have first made the dish as a replacement for meat during Lent. The hearty fritters are now found around the world as a replacement for meat and as a form of street food. The Israeli appropriation of falafel (פלאפל) as a “national snack” has caused indignation among Palestinians and in parts of the Arab world who see the dish as authentically Arab. The origin of falafel is unknown and controversial. A common theory is that the dish originates in Egypt, possibly eaten by Copts as a replacement for meat during Lent. Alexandria being a port city made it possible to export the dish and name to other areas in the Middle East. Some authors even claim it dates to the pharaonic period. The dish later migrated northwards to the Levant, where chickpeas replaced the fava. It has been theorized to a lesser extent that falafel has origins in the Indian subcontinent where it and other chickpea-based dishes are also popular. In recent years, the falafel debates have sometimes devolved into political discussions about the relationship between Arabs and Israelis. Falafel grew to become a common form of street food or fast food in the Middle East. During Ramadan, falafel balls are sometimes eaten as part of the iftar, the meal that breaks the daily fast after sunset. Falafel became so popular that McDonald’s began to serve a “McFalafel” in some countries.


This is a great falafel recipe, been in my family for generations,  no matter how much I try to change it I always come back to this one. There are many variation to falafel recipes out there. Falafel is so versatile and localized, restaurants and falafel street vendors taste different form town to town, from village to village, from street to street. I grew up eating this falafel recipe so I like it the most. “A bit bias may I add”.


  • 4 cups chick peas (dried)
  • 2 large onions
  • 1 whole head of garlic
  • 2 bunches parsley
  • Hot green pepper to suit your taste
  • 2 tsp. Cumin powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp. Baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. Baking soda


  1. Soak the chick peas overnight. When ready to make the falafel drain and set aside
  2. Combine the chick peas, onions, garlic, parsley and hot pepper, if you are using a meat grinder to make the falafel, then grind twice, if are using food processor process the falafel mix coarsely, not too coarse as long as you don’t turn it into a paste consistency.
  3. Add salt, pepper, cumin and baking powder and mix thoroughly.
  4. When ready to fry the falafel, add baking soda,
  5. Shape into patties 1 1/2” diameter and ½” thick. Or use the falafel maker shown below.
  6. Fry in deep hot oil until light brown and crisp.
  7. Server hot with tomato slices in wrapped pita bread
  8. The best way to make falafel sandwich is to wrap it in pita bread and add all the condiments, such as Parsley Tahini sauce (بقدونسية)or Just Tahini Sauce (طحينية), onions garnished with parsley.

Note: This falafel recipe can be stored in the freezer. Thaw and add the baking soda just before ready to cook.

Cooking time (duration): 60 minutes

Diet type: Vegetarian

Number of servings (yield): 6

Meal type: lunch

Culinary tradition: Middle Eastern

My rating: 5 stars:  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)

Falafel Maker-Falafel Scooper

Quality  Falafel Scoop from the Middle East. A Tool that every Falafel Lover must have.

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