Get ready for a party in your mouth, because we are headed to the Middle East seriously a party in the Middle East! Today I’m sharing with you my take on the traditional falafels, these are easy to make, perfect for lunch and dinner and a great way for those picky eaters in the family, to eat their vegetables.
Now first things first, what is a falafel? Falafels have been a long Middle Eastern favourite dish made from fava beans, chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans), or a combination of both. The traditional falafels are seasoned with fresh herbs and spices formed into balls and are often stuffed in a pita or wrapped in a flat bread with lettuce, tomatoes and tahini sauce. The traditional way to cook them is to deep fry them, but in this recipe my falafels are baked plus I’m going to pair it with a dairy free yogurt sauce instead and I promise you they will taste amazing.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 Cups of Canned chickpeas (make sure to rinse them well)
- 1 cup of red onion , finely chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic
- ¼ fresh Coriander
- ¼ fresh mint
- ¼ fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon of brown rice flour
- 1 teaspoon of cumin ground
- 1 teaspoon of coriander ground
- 1 teaspoon of Himalayan salt or to taste
- 1 teaspoon of Cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon of turmeric
- ½ of bell pepper (remove seeds)
- ½ cup of raw unsalted pumpkin seeds
- 2 tablespoons of grapeseed oil
1) Firstly preheat the oven to 180 ° Celsius
2) In a food processor, add chickpeas and pulse for 20 seconds
3) Add in garlic, onions, bell pepper, cumin, coriander, cayenne, salt, rice flour, turmeric, mint, cilantro, parsley, pumpkin seeds, lemon juice and pulse for 30 seconds. The mixture should be slightly course and well combined but not completely smooth or it will be sticky.
4) Transfer into a mixing bowl and add in 2 tablespoons of grape seed oil
5) Shape the mixture into balls or patties and place them into a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper or even tin foil would do.
6) Bake for about 20-30 minutes and turn each falafel halfway through the baking until the outside of the falafels have crisped up.
7) Serve the falafel with your favourite greens, chopped tomatoes, cucumber and Tzatziki sauce.
Dairy-Free Tzatziki with Fresh Mint
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 cup unsweetened dairy-free coconut yogurt
- 1 cucumber, diced small
- 3 tablespoon lemon juice
- Dash salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon fresh chopped mint leaves (I was low on my mint leaves so I also added a few dill bits)
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl until thoroughly combined.
- Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving. Serve with salad, wrap it in a pita or as a dipping sauce with the Falafels yum!
If you’re a beauty junkie like me you’d love to know what health benefits are in the foods that we eat, because there’s nothing we want more than a glowing complexion and clear skin. So before we get straight into making this delicious meal, let’s see what health benefits these falafels have to offer.
Now the star of the show is chickpeas; chickpeas are high in vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin B6, Magnesium, Zinc, Calcium, Copper, Folate and Iron which means they are great acne fighters and they help balance out acne inducing hormones. They also contain a high amount of protein and fiber which have powerful anti-inflammatory effects that help improve the skins texture, elasticity and smoothness.
I love onions, they add such a great flavour to your food; onions have anti-biotic and antiseptic properties which help skin disorders such as acne that assist in reducing redness and swelling in the skin. More Please? Ok If you insist; onions hold many anti-ageing benefits inside of them such as antioxidant, (Antioxidants are like rescuers who protect you from the bad guys), Vitamins A, C and E help fight against the damage caused by the harmful UV rays plus prevents ‘’free radical damage’’, (a free radical basically are the bad guys, who destroy cells in your body continuously) which is responsible for causing premature aging. Therefore onions protect your skin, keeps your skin wrinkle free and keeps it looking soft like a baby’s bottom.
By adding garlic to the recipe we have added another great health benefit to our diet for instance garlic promotes circulation of the skin thus giving you a healthy natural glow. Garlic also contains high levels of Magnesium, Calcium, Vitamin B1, B6 and C, copper, and Potassium which improves the immune system which can help you fight the cold and flu (perfect for when the weather goes from mild to cold and back again).
This aromatic and fresh smelling herb reduces anxiety levels and also helps the quality of your sleep as it is a calming herb. We all know that beauty sleep plays an important role in the way our skin looks and feels, but not enough sleep can also make you stress, causing your blood vessels to open, which triggers the look of dark circles. So don’t worry, all you need is some fresh coriander in your life to keep you looking healthy and worry- free.
Fresh mint gives you healthy-looking and acne free skin. How? Well mint has a distinctive property which helps calm itchy skin and cures infections, this is due to the strong anti- inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties mint carries which is also great for reducing pimples.
Parsley works wonderfully to help remove dark circles beneath the eyes, since it contains high amounts of Vitamin C, which helps lighten under the eyes and decrease the puffiness. Also eating parsley regularly can help balance the extra sebum production in those with oily skins which can help clear pores that may lead to acne breakouts.
The warm and bitter flavour of this musky spice contain a good source of Iron and Magnesium which are a key in keeping your immune system healthy and keeping you full of energy. Cumin also contain fiber which has a reviving effect on the skin and keeps metabolism into shape.
It’s probably no surprise that lemons are a great source of Vitamin C, minerals and antioxidants which enhances your appearance, by rejuvenating the skin from within, giving you a radiance fresh face. So when life gives you lemons… add a squeeze of lemon juice into your everyday food to get some added nutrition to help keep skin clear and healthy.
Himalayan Pink Salt
Himalayan Pink Salt is also is another essential to add to your pantry and here’s why? It can be used to remove toxins from the body which will make you feeling refreshed and energized and helps encourages circulation in the body, leaving you with a afterglow
This spicy pepper actually helps increase the blood flow to your skin taking along oxygen and other crucial nutrients such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E and several anti-oxidants which increase the health of the skin. As a result helps repair damaged skin, balances hormones, helps relief’s headache and even balances cholesterol levels.
Turmeric is a great spice for cooking, I just love the bright yellow golden colour with a hint of an earthy scent to it, not to mention many great health benefits it has such as; reducing acne, pigmentation and blemishes. This pretty spice also has anti-aging properties , which helps slows down the aging process, which means preventing wrinkles so we can forever look young. And this is why I make sure I use this spice regularly so I can enjoy the benefits from the inside out.
Bell peppers also known as capsicums, have a great crunch to them, they are packed with vitamins that have an antioxidant effect on the skin cells which help improve the skins surface and protects the skin from aging. Bell peppers also have anti-septic properties which make them effective in fighting food poisoning. Another reason to start popping bell peppers into your food is they help support healthy night vision because there high in Vitamin A, so seeing red, yellow and green is a good thing.
I call these babies the beauty seeds; each kernel contains high amounts of Vitamin E and Zinc which we all know is an important part of our skin care routine. These beauty seeds help generate new skin cells and collagen which help repair the existing skin problems. Also Vitamin E acts as a strong antioxidant thus improving the skin tone, so start reaping their rich health benefits today!
We all need vitamins and minerals to live a long and healthy life. If you’re someone whose diet lacks the nutrients needed for a good healthy skin or general overall health try SkinB5’s capsules, but you should consult your family doctor too.
I hope you all enjoyed reading the breakdown of my falafels. Having said that, have you ever tried a falafel before? Share below you’re take on falafels!
Lots of love
Farah and the SkinB5 family.
Farah has been using SkinB5 for two years now. She is an advocate for natural and organic beauty products, healthy living and a self-proclaimed whole foods enthusiast. Her passion for health and beauty stems from her personal experiences dealing with problematic skin and now she wants to help others learn her secrets to flawless skin from the inside, out.