The York JCC had the honor of hosting community member, Vivian (Viv) Lazar in our kitchen this week to demonstrate how to make falafel in celebration of Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israel Independence Day). Viv comes from a line of Chefs throughout the world, and a wealth of knowledge. Check out the recipe and video demonstration below.
1 cups of chickpeas soaked overnight for at least 8-10 hours
I bunch of parsley
1 bunch of cilantro
1/2 white union
1 whole shallot
3-4 fresh garlic cloves
1/2 serrano pepper or jalapeño
Cut In half and remove seeds and stem and vein
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper
1 tbs of ground cumin
1 tbs of ground cardamom
1/2 tsp of kosher salt
1/4 tsp of freshly ground pepper
2 tbs of white flour or chickpea flour if available (it’s preferred)
1/4 tsp of baking soda
Soak your chickpeas in cold water overnight for 8-10 hours. Water will be yellowish in the morning but that is perfectly ok. Add chickpeas to your food processor, add a layer of Parsley, cilantro, white onion, shallot, garlic, salt, pepper, cardamom, and cumin. Process together, stopping and scraping the sides until it’s all incorporated and feels and looks like coarse sand. Put the mixture in a bowel and add baking soda and flour and refrigerate for the day. Take the mixture out of the refrigerator an hour before you want to cook it so it can reach room temperature. Fill a pot with canola or vegetable oil and heat to about 300 degrees. Test by dropping one falafel ball into the oil, when it sizzles and rises to the top, the oil is then ready. Don’t overcrowd your oil, cook 4-5 falafels at a time so that your oil doesn’t drop in temperature. When they are golden brown and crispy, remove from oil and place on a paper towel to soak up excess oil.
Enjoy with warmed pita, salad, and a drizzle of tahini.