I did it! I made my first falafel for dinner last night. I had fully intended to purchase Ziyad brand falafel mix in a box, but when I saw this post at Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice, a blog I've been following recently, I couldn't resist trying these. I'm sure Ziyad brand falafel mix in a box is good, but I figure anything made from scratch with fresh herbs and newly acquired spices has got to be better, right?
Another aspect which attracted me to this post and recipe was the fact that there was a recipe for skillet flatbread accompanying it. I think these skillet flatbreads are so cool!! I had wanted to make my own pita breads for the first time, but these skillet flatbreads are perfect for falafel in the summer and are sooo easy. No heating up the oven, just two minutes per flatbread in the cast iron skillet! The only change I made to the skillet flatbread recipe was that I replaced about 1/3 of the all-purpose flour with white-whole wheat. These skillet flatbreads can be used for sandwiches too, as Reeni suggests in her post here for salmon burgers. These are wonderful as well! I made them last week to test out the flatbread recipe, but I substituted fresh tarragon for the dill, and then used this tartar sauce recipe.
So last night, after having my test run with the flatbread the week before, I was ready for the falafel. I had a little problem with my falafel mixture staying together in 1 Tbsp balls after the mix had chilled in the freezer for 20 minutes, but that was the only issue. The only thing I could see to do at the moment was to add flour to the mix, so I added maybe a tablespoon or so, until the mix started sticking together better. This was only my second time cooking with a large quantity of hot oil, the first being my adventure last fall with doughnuts. This time I was only working with oil that was 2" deep, which was nice and not so scary.
We had three falafel balls per flatbread, nestled in with some chopped Romaine lettuce, and some tzatziki sauce, which also included a bit of chopped up fresh mint from one of my pots. (Most of the herbs in my pots have died, but the mint is still trying to hang on.) The outside of the falafel balls were crunchy and the inside moist and incredibly yummy from cumin, coriander, cayenne and lots of garlic.
I just had to share my first falafel attempt and hopefully there will be many more. This stuff tastes better than fast food did from McDonalds or Wendy's when I was in my tweens :)
Also, I thought I'd share what I did between baking tasks today. It was the dreaded B-A-T-H day for Tucker. It is so nice to be able to do this outside on the back patio in the warmer months. Although Tucker is made for the water (undercoat and webbing between his toes), he is not the water dog! I tried when he was a puppy to get him to jump in and play in kiddie pools, but he would have none of it. I think, however, that if he could talk to me, he would tell me he rather likes the cool, cool water out of the hose, drenching his heavy fur on a 92°F day.
|Shaking off the excess H20|