For inspiration, I drew on Mark Bittman’s baked falafel recipe. It called for putting all the ingredients into a food processor to chop and blend. Since we’re using a grinder here, I broke that out into two steps – grinding the chickpeas, onion, garlic and parsley, then mixing in the spices and lemon juice.
1 3/4 cups dried chickpeas
2 garlic cloves
1 small onion, quartered
1 tablespoon cumin
Pinch of cayenne, or to taste
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup tahini
Cover the chickpeas in a large bowl with water by 3 to 4 inches. Soak for 12 to 24 hours, checking as they soak to ensure they are submerged and have enough water. They should triple in size and break apart with your fingers when they are ready.
Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Drain the chickpeas and add to a bowl with the garlic and onion. Set up the stand mixer with the food grinder attachment and turn on. Place a large empty bowl under the opening of the grinder to catch the ground chickpea mixture. Turn the mixer to level 4 and begin adding the chickpeas, onion and garlic into the grinder funnel. Use the plunger tool to push the chickpeas down into the grinder, forcing the grind.
Once all is ground, add the cumin, cayenne, herb, I teaspoon of salt, pepper, baking soda and lemon juice. Stir together till well mixed. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more salt, pepper or cayenne as needed.
Spread 2 tablespoons olive oil onto a large rimmed baking sheet. Roll the chickpea mixture into large balls, roughly 1 1/2 inches each. Should make 18 to 20 balls. Place the falafel balls onto the pan and brush the tops with the remaining tablespoons oil. Bake until golden brown, about 10 to 15 minutes on each side.
Whisk the tahini and remaining salt with 1/2 cup water in a small bowl until smooth. Drizzle the tahini over the falafel and serve.
Originally published in “Meat Grinders For Vegetarians: Baked Falafel”