March 19, 2011


So, if you are a frequent reader you know my affinity for Aarti on Foodnetwork. Well did you know she has a blog?? Um, I didn't and I can't believe I haven't found it before. It's a great mix of recipes, music, culture, fun and more - check it out.

So back in Feb. we made these WONDERFUL pealafel sandwiches for dinner from her Belly Dance show. Oh my goodness they were so good and really more flavorful that traditional falafel. They were rich, crispy, smooth, creamy and had the most beautiful vibrant green color.

I do have to say though they did not re-heat in the microwave well the next day for lunch and became a bit greasy, but I think re-heating in the oven would be a much better route - that is if you have any left, because they are so good you'll want to eat them all!

We served with a simple tabouli salad and in pitas with the sauce - delicious!!!

This is certainly a great summer meal as tomatoes, cukes, and herbs start sprouting!!

Adapted from Aarti Parti, Food Network

For the Sauce
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 cup plain non-fat yogurt
1/2 cup lightly packed fresh mint leaves, finely chopped, plus 3/4 cup whole leaves
Kosher salt

For the patties
1 cup frozen peas, thawed and drained
1 cup frozen edamame, thawed and drained
1 small onion, peeled and roughly chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup flour
Canola oil, for frying

pitas, halved
2 large vine-ripened tomatoes, cut into large dice
1 large English cucumber, sliced into 1/8-inch rounds

In a small skillet, toast the fennel and coriander seeds for a couple of minutes until they're fragrant and slightly darker, about 2 minutes. Remove from the pan and throw into a coffee/spice grinder. Grind to a fine powder.

For the yogurt sauce: Mix the yogurt with the 1/2 cup finely chopped mint leaves and a generous pinch of salt. Chill in the fridge.

Throw the peas, edamame, ground spices, shallot, garlic, remaining whole mint leaves, olive oil, and salt into a food processor and puree until smooth. It won't get completely smooth because of the edamame, but process until it is as smooth as possible.

Scrape into a big bowl and stir in the flour. The mixture will still be pretty soft. Not to worry!

Pour enough oil into a large skillet - about 1/4-inch deep. Heat over medium heat until shimmering. Then shape the pea mixture into 12 small patties the size of a golf ball, and then gently drop into the oil. I did this by using my cookie scoop to get the rounded size I wanted. I then flattened them a bit between my hands before popping in the oil. Fry until the bottoms are browned and then carefully flip over. Brown the other side, and then remove from the pan and drain on a paper towel-lined plate - do drain them!! they retain a bit of oil and you'll want that to soak out before you put these in your pitas.

Serve warm in a pita bread pocket stuffed with the fresh veggies and a spoonful of the yogurt sauce.

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