Saturday, October 20, 2007

Flaxseed Falafel Sandwiches

Since I have a huge bag of flaxseed in our refrigerator from the Caramel Apple Muffins I made a few weeks ago, I decided to try out this recipe tonight. It's basic falafel, but it has some flaxseed mixed in (i.e. hidden) to give it some extra healthiness. It's a pretty yummy recipe as a whole, but I wish the falafels had been crispier. They were very smooshy and did not retain their shape at all. I know real falafel is so crispy because it's deep fried, and this is a healthy version that is not deep fried, but I still kind of missed it. We probably won't make this again, as there are other falafel recipes in the world to try.

Flaxseed Falafel Sandwiches
From Cooking Light, May 2000

1/3 cup flaxseed
1 (19-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon flaxseed
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon olive oil
Cooking spray
4 (6-inch) pitas, cut in half
8 curly leaf lettuce leaves
Mediterranean Chopped Salad (recipe follows)
1/2 cup plain fat-free yogurt

Place 1/3 cup flaxseed in a blender or clean coffee grinder, and process until ground to measure 1/2 cup flaxseed meal; set flaxseed meal aside.

Drain chickpeas over a bowl, reserving liquid. Place chickpeas, garlic, and 1 tablespoon reserved liquid in blender; pulse 5 times or until coarsely chopped. Add flaxseed meal, parsley, and next 5 ingredients (parsley through red pepper); pulse just until mixture is combined. Divide chickpea mixture into 8 equal portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty. Combine breadcrumbs and 1 tablespoon flaxseed in a shallow dish. Dip patties in egg white; dredge in breadcrumb mixture.

Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add patties; cook 5 minutes on each side or until browned.

Line each pita half with a lettuce leaf; fill each pita half with 1 patty and about 3 tablespoons Mediterranean Chopped Salad. Top each with 1 tablespoon yogurt.

Mediterranean Chopped Salad:
1 cup diced tomato
1/2 cup diced peeled English cucumber
2 tablespoons chopped green onions
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 teaspoons minced seeded jalapeƱo pepper
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl; toss gently. Let stand for up to 2 hours.

Yield: 4 servings

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