Falafel are a popular street food all across the Middle East and Egypt but there's a lot of disagreement as to where they originated and who makes the finest. We think ours are up there with the best! Try them and see if you agree!
Flat Leaf Parsley
Vegetable Stock Pot
Harissa Spice Mix
water for couscous
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees. Peel and grate the garlic (or use a garlic press). Roughly chop the flat leaf parsley (stalks and all!). Remove the top and bottom of the carrot and coarsely grate (no need to peel). Zest and juice the lemon. Drain and rinse the chickpeas in a colander, then pop them into a mixing bowl. Crush the chickpeas with a potato masher or fork until they are completely broken down and no longer whole.
Add the breadcrumbs to the bowl along with half the parsley, the carrot, the cumin, water (amount specified in the ingredient list), half the lemon zest and half the lemon juice. Season with salt and black pepper. Squish the mix with your hands. It should come together. TIP: If it's a bit dry, add 1 tbsp of water. Shape the mix into even-sized balls, three per person. Flatten the balls into patties and set aside.
Boil the water (amount specified in the ingredient list) in a large saucepan over high heat. Season it with salt and black pepper. Add the saffron powder, a glug of oil and the vegetable stock pot. Stir to dissolve. Pour in the couscous, cover with a lid or foil and remove from the heat. Leave for 10 mins. The couscous will absorb the water as it cooks.
Heat a frying pan over medium heat and add the flaked almonds. Dry-fry for 2 mins until lightly browned. TIP: Move them around to make sure they don't burn. Remove from the pan and set aside. Return the pan to medium heat and add a glug of oil. When the oil is hot, cook the falafel until they are well and evenly browned, 2 mins on each side. Transfer them to a baking tray lined with baking paper and pop on the top shelf of your oven for 5 mins.
While the falafel are in your oven, finish off the last couple of jobs. Chop the vine tomato into 1cm chunks. Pop the natural yoghurt in a small bowl and season with a pinch of salt and the harissa spice mix. TIP: The harissa spice mix is hot, hot, hot, so only use a pinch to start with and taste the yoghurt before adding any more.
When the couscous is ready, fluff it up with a fork and mix in the tomato chunks, raisins and remaining parsley. Add the rest of the lemon zest and a dash of lemon juice. Taste, and add more salt and black pepper if you feel it needs it. Serve the chickpeas falafel alongside a generous pile of saffron couscous a dollop of the harissa yoghurt and finish with flaked almonds.