Thursday, October 8, 2009

Baked Falafels with tahini-yogurt sauce

Last week I had some terrible falafels at shawarma shop, and thought of how far they were from the delicious, bright green spicy morsels I remember from Saudi Arabia. It's not something I usually order anyway, since they are typically deep-fried. So I decided to go on a falafel quest....I scoured the internet for recipes, advice, and guidance. Armed with some new knowledge, I hit the kitchen. Here is my version....I think they turned out very delicious! Next time I will make them with the green fava beans that are traditional in Arabian falafels.

Baked Falafels with Tahini-Yogurt Sauce

1 1/4 C cooked garbonzo beans (or 1 can)
3 cloves garlic
1 handful parsley
1 handful cilantro
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 tsp cumin
1 chili pepper
1 tsp tahini paste
2 grinds each of salt and pepper
2 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp flour (ideally garbonzo bean flour)

Pulse all the ingredients except the flour in a food processor until mixture resembles a coarse meal and the herbs have turned the mixture green. Transfer into a bowl and add the flour, stirring well until combined. Form into 8 balls (about 2 Tbsp mixture for each), and flatten to form a disc. Spray a baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray, place falafels on the sheet, and spray them with cooking spray. Bake at 375F for 30 minutes, turing once, or until golden brown.
Each falafel is 48 calories, 0.6g fat, 2.3g protein, 8g carbs, 1.6g fibre, and 10mg sodium.


1/2C yogurt
2 green onions, finely chopped
1 tsp tahini paste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, chill until ready to use.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Brussels Sprouts a l'orange

In honour of the approaching Thanksgiving holiday, I am posting my recipe for Brussels sprouts. Now, I was never a big fan of the Sprout, but a certain French cook transformed me from a girl who would risk choking to death in an attempt to swallow one of the little suckers whole, rather than chew (I had parents who made us always eat our veggies!) into a Sprout-loving maniac. Yes, maniac! The cook was my ex's sister....we didn't have much in common but the woman knew her way around a Sprout. My recipe doesn't much resemble hers, but I learned technique from her, and that Brussels sprouts don't have to be mushy yuck...they can be tender yet crisp, green little lovelies with a delicately earthy flavour and sweetness that tastes like more. Yum!

Brussels Sprouts a L'orange

Per pound of sprouts, you will need 1 orange, 2 tsp Grand Marnier, and 2 tsp butter. The oranges should be juiced and zested.

You must have fresh, not frozen sprouts, if you can get them still on the stalk and cut them off yourself, even better. Clean and trim them, cut each one in half and cut a little slit in the core end of each half, like so:

Heat a large frypan on medium-high heat and coat with cooking spray. Throw in the sprouts and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until you see them browning a bit. Then put in the Grand Marnier and let it evaporate. When it is mostly evaporated, put in the orange juice and zest, stir it all up and put a lid on it. Let the sprouts steam in the juice for about 3 minutes, really it depends on the size...small sprouts need very little time, larger ones will need a bit more and may requuire a splash of water to keep the steaming going longer...just try them as you go, they should be fork-tender but still bright green and have some crispness to bite. The liquid should be all evaporated by the time they are done, at this point put in the butter, some cracked pepper and sea salt, and toss to coat.