Crispy pan-fried bulgur falafel with a creamy tahini yogurt sauce on fresh pita flatbreads. Meatless Monday just stepped it up a notch.
I don’t know if this will sound cheesy, probably will, but do you ever get the feeling of being rich? Not in the sense of having mounds of money, but more along the lines of suddenly just feeling really really fulfilled? That’s sort of the cloud I’ve been walking on for the past few days.
Most of it stems from the Berry Bulgur Breakfast Bake video the tulip-man and I put together Sunday. I jimmied together a contraption involving his fancy new Samsung, my secondhand tripod, and a small LED light to create our grand studio.
It was so much fun to shoot and maybe we both spent way too much time hovering over the computer making everything juuuust right to give our little movie baby a shot at internet success, but you can expect to see more cooking videos soon!
I also explored! Like…explored further than my every-other-day trip to the local grocery. On Monday I ventured into the center of Rotterdam with a new friend and adventured about Blaak, home to the iconic cube houses and the Maarkthal, an enormous indoor market packed with every kind of food you could ever need (heaven).
And somewhere in all of this rich, happy, food-filled exploration, I figured out how to work bulgur into a boldly flavorful falafel. I say “figured out” because at one point they were all collapsing and disintegrating into the oil and I was DONE with them, but the boyfriend-tulip-man pushed me on and voila!
I got them to work! And they don’t just work. They kill it. These are mildly spicy, majorly crispy, soft on the inside, perfectly paired with a creamy tahini yogurt sauce, and all wrapped up in simple homemade garlic flatbreads.
- ½ cup medium grind bulgur 100 g
- ½ cup boiling water 118 mL
- 1 ½ 15-oz can chickpeas 315 g, drained
- ½ cup chopped onion 1 small
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tsp chili powder or ¼ tsp cumin, pinch of cayenne, pinch of paprika, can add up to 2 tsp if you know you like spicy flavors
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- 1 egg
- ½-1 cup breadcrumbs
- ½ cup oil for panfrying 118 mL, a high heat oil like palm, canola, or macadamia
- 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt 260 g
- 2 Tbsp tahini 20 g, or hummus
- 1 clove garlic minced
- ½ tsp honey
- Pinch paprika and ground ginger
You’ll Also Need
- 4 pita flatbreads
- Garnish with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and/or parsley
- Mix all “sauce” ingredients. Cover and let the flavors mingle in fridge.
- In small bowl, combine bulgur and boiling water. Set aside 30 minutes or so, until water is absorbed. Drain off any excess water.
- While bulgur is doing its thing, combine chickpeas, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and chili powder in a food processor until it holds together in a dough. Don’t over do it though, we don’t want hummus! (If you don’t have a food processor, mash chickpeas with a fork, finely chop onions, and mix well). If dough seems overly wet and sticks to your hands, add flour 1 Tbsp at a time (I didn’t need to add any though).
- In a large bowl, combine bulgur, baking powder, parsley, egg, and chickpea mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours (skip this if you’re low on time, but your dough may be more fragile)
- Scoop tablespoon-sized rounds from the dough and gently pat to form balls or nuggets. Should make about 16 falafels.
- Pour breadcrumbs onto a plate. Roll each falafel in breadcrumbs to lightly coat.
- Heat a few tablespoons of oil over medium/high heat in a large skillet. Cook falafels, working in batches, for about 5 minutes each, flipping frequently, until light brown and crispy. Add more oil as needed and reduce heat if bits of falafel start popping out of the pan. Place cooked falafels on a dry paper towel until ready to serve.
- Spread sauce on a flatbread. Add lettuce, tomatoes, onion, and 4 or so falafels to each flatbread. As they say in Holland, “eet smakelijk!”