There are many types of falafel, but I would highlight two: the crunchy, delicate and explosive balls in flavor that are eaten in few places, and the coarse, sandy mondongos that tend to create ball effect Common in too many supposedly “Arab” fast food establishments. Lebanese restaurant falafel Iakni, in Barcelona, it belongs to the first category, and for me it is among the best that can be tried in Spain.
Its owner Ralph Mnsann, agreed to tell us something about the history of this vegetable fry and what it means for the gastronomy of the countries of the Middle East. And he also showed us his recipe, which connects classic Lebanese falafel with the dish’s Egyptian origins. Everything is, as always, in the video above.
- 225 g of dried beans, peeled and split (failing that, chickpeas)
- 75 g dried chickpeas
- 110 g onion (1 medium onion)
- 1 or 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 15 g fresh coriander
- 6 tablespoons of tahini
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Salt to taste
- Lebanese pita bread to roll up the falafel
- Finely chopped parsley
- Pickled cucumber, alficoz or turnip in beets
- Soak the legumes in their same weight in water: 225 ml for beans and 75 ml for chickpeas. Leave 12 hours or overnight.
- Finely chop the garlic.
- In a robot or blender glass, crush the onion, minced garlic, cumin, coriander, coriander seeds and salt.
- Add the beans and chickpeas at the end and blend without overdoing it: it is about breaking up the legumes but not reducing them to a paste. Let the mixture rest in the fridge for 2 hours.
- Form small balls with the mixture and fry them in very hot oil.
- Prepare the tarator sauce by beating the tahini, lemon juice and salt, adding ice water little by little if necessary until obtaining a kind of fine cream.
- Serve the falafel with the sauce and the tomatoes cut in two, the radishes in slices and the pickles. If you want to take it as a sandwich, remove one of the two layers from the bread, put the falafel balls cut in half in the center, tomatoes, radishes, pickles and sauce, and roll up as seen in the video.