Taste the World: Lebanese Baked Falafel & Hummus

To be honest, I just can’t remember where in the world I’ve tried falafel & hummus for the first time. It might have been in Dubai, Israel, maybe even at a snack stall in the U.S. What I do know, however: it surely wasn’t in Lebanon, since unfortunately I haven’t been there yet. Nevertheless, these recipes for baked falafel & hummus are based on the traditional Lebanese recipes, which I was taught on the Island of Mauritius by the nicest Lebanese I’ve ever met. Btw neither the Lebanese couple, nor we were there voluntarily. We all were stranded there after we missed our connecting flight from Réunion Island to Dubai. To cut a long story short, the moral is: always make the best of any given situation. Ok. But the actual point for this post: thanks to this encounter, I can share these authentic Lebanese recipes with you – with just a few teeny tiny adjustments…

baked falafel salad healthy

Baked falafel instead of fried

Instead of deep-frying the falafel, as traditionally common, I like to bake them. This is why I usually add some baking soda and flatten them instead of shaping little balls. To me this low-fat version tastes just as fantastic. If you like these chickpea patties a little more crispy without deep-frying them, you could fry them in a pan with just a little oil from each side or you could lightly brush them with some oil before baking. I love eating these baked falafel in a wrap together with some hummus and fresh veggies or I’d just have them with a salad, some sesame sauce and hummus.

baked falafel no oil

Falafel gebacken Salat gesund
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Baked Falafel (low-fat) & Sesame Sauce
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
45 mins
 

Traditionally falafel are deep-fried, but they taste just as great without any oil when baked. The best way to serve baked falafel? With fresh vegetables, homemade hummus and sesame sauce.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Lebanese
Servings: 15 falafel
Author: Mina
Ingredients
For the falafel
  • 1 cup dry chickpeas/ garbanzo beans (not canned!)
  • 3 garlic cloves, roasted (or 2 cloves raw)
  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 bunch parsley, chopped
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice, fresh
  • 4 tbsp chickpea flour (or other flour)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2-1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • a pinch black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda (optional)
  • a pinch cayenne pepper (optional)
  • a pinch cardamom (optional)
For the sesame sauce
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice, fresh
  • 1 clove of garlic, pressed
Instructions
For the falafel
  1. Soak chickpeas in the threefold water overnight (at least 12 h). 

  2. Before moving on with the recipe the next day, preheat the oven to 180° C (350° F).

  3. Add all ingredients but the chickpeas to the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth. Add mixture to a large mixing bowl and set aside.

  4. Drain chickpeas and rinse well before adding them to the food processor. Pulse until a coarse meal forms, scraping down the sides every now and then. The mixture should be somewhere between the texture of couscous and a paste.

    Add to the bowl with the other spice-herb mixture and mix to combine.

  5. Take a tbsp of the mixture and form a patty with a diameter of about 1.5 inches. Continue with the rest of the mixture. Place chickpea patties onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Optionally lightly brush patties with some oil.  Bake falafel for about 30 minutes until golden brown, flipping halfway through.

For the sesame sauce
  1. Combine all the sauce ingredients and, according to desired taste, add 4-8 tbsp of water. 

Recipe Notes
  • Quick soaking method (1 hour): to a pot add chickpeas, together with at least double the amount of water and bring the chickpeas to a boil. Let them boil for 5 minutes, remove from heat and let them soak in the hot water for 1 hour. 
  • Optionally roasted garlic: remove any loose layers, leaving at least one layer to keep the cloves together. Cut the tops off, exposing each bulb and place cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 175° C (375° F) for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  • If the falafel mixture is to wet, add some more (chickpea) flour.
  • If you don't want to omit the oil completely and like the falafel a little more crispy, lightly brush them with some oil before baking.
  • Alternatively you could fry the patties in a pan with some oil from both sides.

Hummus – traditional vs. quick & dirty

This recipe is pretty similar to the one I’ve shared before, but there’s a crucial difference. Whenever I make the quick version I’d use canned chickpeas. Traditionally hummus is made by soaking, cooking and peeling the chickpeas yourself before making hummus. Even if it takes 10 more minutes to do that, it’s really worth it. This versions does make a huge difference as regards taste. If you peel the chickpeas as well, you’ll be rewarded with the smoothest hummus ever. Just saying.

Hummus original libanese

By the way, have you seen my other Lebanese recipe yet? It’s one of my favorite salads and would be a wonderful addition to theses dishes. You can check out the recipe for tabouleh salad here.

Hummus original libanesisch ölfrei
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Authentic Lebanese Hummus
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
1 hrs
Total Time
1 hrs 15 mins
 

Here's how hummus is made traditionally. Chickpeas get soaked, cooked and ideally peeled. This method requires a little more time compared to the fast method using canned chickpeas, but you'll be rewarded with the smoothest chickpea puree ever.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Lebanese
Servings: 1 bowl
Author: Mina
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups chickpeas/ garbanzo beans, dry
  • 6 cloves of garlic, roasted (or 2-3 cloves of raw garlic)
  • 5 tbsp tahini
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice, fresh
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2-1 tsp salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup cooking water
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 pinch of sumac or smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1-2 tbsp parsley, minced for garnishing (optional)
Instructions
  1. Soak chickpeas in the threefold amount of water overnight (at least 12 hours). Drain and rinse well before cooking in the threefold amount of water for about 1 hour. Drain chickpeas, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. 

    Optional but highly recommended for extra smooth and creamy hummus: peel chickpeas by squeezing each chickpea gently between your fingers and removing the skin. 

  2. To the bowl of a food processor add chickpeas (optional: reserve 5-10 for serving), garlic, tahini, lemon juice, cumin and salt and blend until smooth. If necessary, add some of the reserved cooking water and continue to blend until desired consistency is reached. Taste the mixture and add more salt, garlic or lemon juice to taste.

  3. Transfer hummus to a bowl and garnish with olive oil, sumac/ paprika and parsley. Serve right away. 

    Keeps well in the fridge for a few days, too.

Recipe Notes
  • Quick soaking method (1 hour): to a pot add chickpeas, together with at least double the amount of water and bring the chickpeas to a boil. Let them boil for 5 minutes, remove from heat and let them soak in the hot water for 1 hour. 
  • Optionally roasted garlic: remove any loose layers, leaving at least one layer to keep the cloves together. Cut the tops off, exposing each bulb and place cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 175° C (375° F) for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.

I hope you love these recipes – please let me know in the comment section below! If you make these baked falafel or the hummus, make sure to take a photo and share it on my Facebook page or on Instagram, using the hashtag #minamadefood. Oh and don’t forget to tag me (@thisisminamade) so that I can see your creations!

Falafel Teller gebacken gesund

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