Monday, July 20, 2009

Baked Falafel Sandwiches with Yogurt-Tahini Sauce

Seriously, no falafel will ever be as good as the falafel we had from Amsterdam Falafel. Ever. But this recipe uses some nice fluffy flatbread and a thick yogurt-tahini sauce, so I figured it might at least be good enough to hold us over until we can one day go back to Amsterdam Falafel. Turns out that it's really pretty good! I put cucumber on the wraps, and I put extra cayenne in the falafel. I also added a little bit extra bulgur by accident which did not affect it at all. We used some multigrain flatbreads, which had a nice texture and went well with the falafel patties. Also I used 2% Fage Yogurt instead of whole-milk yogurt. I think this was a good choice. We would definitely make this again next time we're craving falafel.

falafel

Baked Falafel Sandwiches with Yogurt-Tahini Sauce
Cooking Light, 12/07

Falafel is a popular Middle Eastern offering consisting of seasoned pureed chickpeas shaped into patties and usually fried. It's worth the effort to seek out Greek yogurt, which is thick, rich, and creamy. Make the sauce up to three days in advance and the falafel mixture up to one day ahead; bake falafel patties just before serving.

Sauce:
1 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt (such as Fage Total Classic)
1 tablespoon tahini (sesame-seed paste)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Falafel:
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup uncooked bulgur
3 cups cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/3 to 1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
3 garlic cloves
Cooking spray

Remaining ingredients:
6 (2.8-ounce) Mediterranean Style white flatbreads (such as Toufayan)
12 (1/4-inch-thick) slices tomato
Chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

To prepare sauce, combine the first 3 ingredients, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

To prepare falafel, bring 3/4 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan; add bulgur to pan. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 30 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside.

Preheat oven to 425°.

Combine chickpeas and the next 9 ingredients (through garlic) in a food processor; pulse 10 times or until well blended and smooth (mixture will be wet). Spoon chickpea mixture into a large bowl; stir in bulgur.

Divide mixture into 12 equal portions (about 1/4 cup each); shape each portion into a 1/4-inch-thick patty. Place patties on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 10 minutes on each side or until browned. Spread about 2 1/2 tablespoons sauce onto each flatbread. Top each flatbread with 2 falafel patties, 2 tomato slices, and chopped cilantro, if desired.

Yield: 6 servings

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