Homemade Nutty Falafel

Super crunchy on the outside and light and fluffy inside, this falafel delivers a delicious flavour combination – fresh herbs, nuts with a wonderful spicy finish of ginger and chilli.

Super crunchy on the outside and light and fluffy inside, this falafel delivers a delicious flavour combination – fresh herbs, nuts with a wonderful spicy finish of ginger and chilli.Ingredients:

  • 300g dry chickpeas
  • 50g pecans
  • 50g fresh coriander; chopped
  • 30g fresh flat leaf parsley; chopped
  • 3 large cloves of garlic; halved
  • ~2cm piece of fresh ginger; peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 medium size onion; roughly chopped
  • 1tbsp spelt flour
  • 1 1/2tsp salt
  • 1 1/2tsp black pepper
  • 1tsp cumin
  • 1/2tsp chilli flakes
  • ~100ml olive oil for frying
  • 1.5l water for soaking

Method:

Pour 1.5l litre of filtered water to a pot, add the chickpeas, pop the lid on and leave to soak for at least 10h (overnight works best).

When you are ready to make your falafel, drain the chickpeas then pop them into a food processor.

Add all other ingredients spreading them evenly around the processor bowl but leaving the pecans to be added last. They will help to weigh down the fresh herbs, which means that everything will better stay in place while mixing.

Use the pulse function until your mixture is coarse to semi-coarse. Do not over pulse / mix or you will end up with a hummus-like texture, which isn’t ideal for falafels.

Once done, remove the blade from your food processor and start forming your falafels. I used an ice-cream scoop to measure mine out and the mixture should yield 24 almost perfect balls of falafel 🙂

Super crunchy on the outside and light and fluffy inside, this falafel delivers a delicious flavour combination – fresh herbs, nuts with a wonderful spicy finish of ginger and chilli.Do not squeeze your mixture too much as this will make it dense and remove moisture from it, which will result in dry falafels later on. If you are struggling to form your desired shape you can:

  1. Pop the blade back on your processor and pulse few more times.
  2. Pop it into the fridge to help firm it up a bit
  3. Or worst case scenario add some eggs to help it glue together, but you really shouldn’t need to do this, if you followed the measurements as stated.

Once all your falafels have their final shape, it’s time to fry!

Super crunchy on the outside and light and fluffy inside, this falafel delivers a delicious flavour combination – fresh herbs, nuts with a wonderful spicy finish of ginger and chilli.In a heavy bottomed frying pan, ideally a small cast iron one, preheat 100ml of olive oil (or more if you pan is bigger, ideally you are aiming for enough oil in the pan to cover half of your falafel).

Bring the oil up to 180C before popping your falafels in. Do not over crowd the pan. I cook 6 at the time despite having space for 12 or even 15. More falafels at one time popped into the pan means a bigger drop in the oil temperature once you put them in (this will result in your falafel soaking up the oil making them greasy) and a general inability to turn them with ease, so take it easy and fry them in batches.

When I fry the oil drops to 170C, this is temperature of my oil once all new falafels are in. I heat it up to 180C again as quickly as possible before turning the heat down and cook for about 5-6 minutes turning regularly

When done remove with a slotted spoon and place on some kitchen roll to soak up any residual oil.

Serve warm or cold with a green salad or go classic and add into a wrap.

Most importantly of all though… enjoy!

Do you like falafel?

What’s your favourite way of serving them?

Super crunchy on the outside and light and fluffy inside, this falafel delivers a delicious flavour combination – fresh herbs, nuts with a wonderful spicy finish of ginger and chilli.

Honey & Pepper Braised Radishes

Soft, sweet and buttery with a spicy finish, this recipe for honey & pepper braised radishes will make a wonderful starter, side dish or even a main dish for any vegetable lovers out there.

Soft, sweet and buttery with a spicy finish, this recipe for honey & pepper braised radishes will make a wonderful starter, side dish or even a main dish for any vegetable lovers out there.Who knew that radishes could be the size of a large grapefruit? They come not only in pink but also white and even pitch black… well, I for one didn’t know that’s for sure.

Our first trip to our local farmers market left us very puzzled. We returned home with bags full of weird and wonderful veggies, which to be honest we had no sensible idea for what they were, let alone what to do with them… Using tried and tested methods we deciphered most of them (some are still a mystery to this very day) and as it ended up some of the large black, white and rose-pink “balls” were not swedes or turnips but lovely giant radishes. Normally we would use a radish in our salads but let’s be honest how many salads can two people eat… we had to come up with something else to do with them all…

Soft, sweet and buttery with a spicy finish, this recipe for honey & pepper braised radishes will make a wonderful starter, side dish or even a main dish for any vegetable lovers out there.Soft, sweet and buttery with a spicy finish, this recipe for honey & pepper braised radishes will make a wonderful starter, side dish or even a main dish for any vegetable lovers out there.As the radish cooks, it loses its “bite” as well as some spiciness and becomes sweet. We were surprised just how sweet they can get when cooked on their own but then we started building on it and after a few tries we think we have perfected a dish of braised radishes which delivers the perfect mixture of sweet and sour. How do you do this you may ask, well you are going to need….

Ingredients:

  • 250g radishes
  • 60ml boiling water
  • 25g butter
  • 1tbsp organic honey
  • 1tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2tsp salt
  • Splash Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 drops Tabasco sauce (more to taste)
  • Spring onion, to serve

Method:

Wash and, if needed, chop radishes into smaller chunks.

In a heavy bottom pan, melt the butter, once melted add radishes and salt and cook for a minute or two.

Add the boiling water and honey. Cover with lid and cook on a medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes or so.

Add both the Worcestershire and Tabasco sauce, crack black pepper and cook further until most of the water has evaporated and you are left with a lovely thick honey glaze.

Serve on a plate and spoon the glaze over the top. Finally, finish with finely chopped spring onions.

Enjoy!

Soft, sweet and buttery with a spicy finish, this recipe for honey & pepper braised radishes will make a wonderful starter, side dish or even a main dish for any vegetable lovers out there.

9 Delicious Walnut Recipes

Walnuts, the nuts of wonder, not only taste amazing but can also provide us with countless benefits. Eating them as a snack is the easiest way to consume a couple of walnuts a day but how about some more adventurous ways of adding them into our diet?

Walnuts, the nuts of wonder, not only taste amazing but can also provide us with countless benefits. Eating them as a snack is the easiest way to consume a couple of walnuts a day but how about some more adventurous ways of adding them into our diet? Today I want to share with you a selection of delicious recipes which incorporate this wonder nut. I hope they will get you inspired.

blue-cheese-tartines-with-apples-arugula-walnutsBlue Cheese Tartines with Apples, Arugula & Walnuts

broccoli-salad-with-apples-walnuts-and-cranberriesBroccoli Salad with Apples Walnuts and Cranberries

butternut-squash-and-pomegranate-kale-salad-with-spiced-honey-walnutsButternut Squash and Pomegranate Kale Salad with Spiced Honey Walnuts

chopped-walnuts-twist-cookiesChopped Walnuts Twist Cookies

coffee-walnut-cakeCoffee Walnut Cake

maple-granola-with-walnuts-and-cranberriesMaple Granola with Walnuts and Cranberries

pear-and-apple-frittata-with-walnuts-goats-cheese-and-honeyPear and Apple Frittata with Walnuts, Goats Cheese and Honey

walnut-banana-protein-pancakesWalnut Banana Protein Pancakes

walnut-sage-cranberry-stuffed-mushroomsWalnut, Sage & Cranberry Stuffed Mushrooms

Which of those tickles your fancy?

And if you are in a super experimenting mood, remember walnut pairs well with apple, apricot, banana, caramel, chocolate, cinnamon, nectarine, peach, pear, plum, rum.

A Shout Out to The Farmers Market

* by Mark

I am a sinner, for I partake in the nasty habit of smoking and so I am often relegated to the cold and wet outside to satisfy my cravings. Over the years I have grown accustomed to the downside of my habit and accept it as a norm. Oh yes before you think it I have tried to quit and sure one day I will quit with the help of vaping but for now success eludes me. So you may now be wondering what on earth this has to do with a farmers market, let me explain…

We smokers are often told from learned and wise people that one of the many downsides to our habit is a reduced or even the total loss of our sense of smell and taste and as they are indeed wise I for one took them at their word.

In a busy and hectic modern lifestyle we as a society have reduced our foraging for food down to the weekly visit to one of the main supermarket chains, its normal and everyone does it. Now as I wander around the fruit and veg section of our local supermarket the smells are muted and in many cases missing, even in the cut flower section. Once home and dinner is prepared my taste buds experience the same muted sense. It must be because I smoke right, my fault right….

A Shout Out to The Farmers MarketNow we live in the deepest darkest corner of Bulgaria, miles from anything resembling a supermarket and having missed the summer so the veg patch is currently bare we have to go foraging in a new way. So to the farmers market we go on a chilly but sunny Wednesday morning to browse a hundred different stalls stacked high with seasonally appropriate vegetables and fruit. This is where I had one of my life changing experiences.

Maybe it was a miracle, maybe Bulgarian cigarettes are made different whatever it was my sense of smell was reeling from all the inputs. I could smell everything and in many cases I didn’t even have to be an inch away but several paces away was close enough to smell the produce. It was an amazing experience and has left a lasting impression on me. When we returned home and prepared some of our newly acquired food my taste buds also joined in with the revelation of working again as the taste of everything was distinct and filled my mouth. I am hooked.

…and yes I still smoke, probably more now than ever as the novelty of £2 a pack makes quitting just a little harder!

So why, I was left wondering, why have my senses returned to me so suddenly after all these years of being dormant. Turns out if you eat stuff grown in clean soil, that’s clean in the sense of not being saturated in chemicals and in a natural environment as it is meant to be grown as stated by Mother Nature the end product smells and tastes amazing. If you eat stuff grown out of season, stuff that grew in a polly-tunnel and that was fed chemicals to facilitate the fastest possible growth cycle to maximise profits the flavour and smell is muted. It is all to do with the micro-organisms in the soil, all the creepy crawlies who defecate and die in the soil, the rain water and the whole ecosystem that the plant grows in. Things we probably don’t want to think about as we are eating but are vital to the amount of smell and taste we experience at the end of it all. Commercially grown stuff tends to be shielded from all that stuff and we pay the price.

So I return to my starting point, with a huge shout out to the farmers market, they are not perfect but they are a far better option than the supermarket shelves of commercially churned out produce. So support your local business person and visit your farmers market and spend a little extra cash, trust me your nose and tongue will thank you.