Baked sun-dried tomato falafel with a bulgur salad
I used to call falafel "full of awful"...oh how times have changed. This currently one of my favorite meals.
The thing about falafel is that it needs a few friends to make it a stand out dish - always tahini and usually a green salad and sometimes some pita bread. I cannot stress how much you need a tahini sauce with falafel - they are made for each other.
When I have falafel it's usually the deep fried kind, in a pita sandwich. Which is, of course, delicious. But in the spirit of a) eating healthier and b) not getting oil all over my kitchen, when I make falafel at home it's always baked. Being a devotee of Mark Bittman, I started using his baked falafel recipe a few years ago and have modified it a few ways since then.
So, I kept seeing people writing about the International Year of Pulses and I finally checked it out. I think most of us know about how nutritious chickpeas, lentils, and beans are, but, I think it's really cool there's a whole year to celebrate them and encourage people to get more of them in their diet. I have a slight obsession with collecting pulses, different types of rice, nuts, and dried fruit. I have several matching sets up tupperware that I've labeled - black quinoa, red quinoa, white quinoa, walnuts, slivered almonds, whole almonds, green lentils, red lentils...you get the picture. Other than making me THRILLED every time I open the cabinet (I <3 organization), it really helps me track what I'm running low on. I know that I'll always be able to make a slow cooker lentil soup if I've got that cabinet stocked.
I hope you enjoy this delicious bowl! Let me know if you make it - hit me up on Instagram - @shinyhappybright
Baked Falafel & Bulgur Salad
Makes 2 Servings | Prep Time: 10 minutes | Total Time: 45 minutes
1 can (14.5 ounces) chickpeas
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup parsley
1 cup cilantro
4 sun-dried tomatoes (packed in oil)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup bulgur, uncooked
2 tomatoes diced*
3 cups spinach, roughly chopped
1/2 cup parsley, roughly chopped
juice of one lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper
Tahini Dressing Ingredients
1 cup water
1/2 cup tahini
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 C).
Combine all ingredients for the falafel in a food processor. Blend until ingredients are combined and sticky enough to form balls.
Form small balls (about 2 tablespoons) and then press into discs.
Repeat until you have 12 to 14 falafel. Place on a non-stick baking sheet or silpat.
Bake for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and flip the falafel. Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes until falafel are golden brown.
While falafel are baking, combine the bulgur and 1 cup of boiling water in a small bowl and cover for 15 minutes.
Combine the tomatoes, spinach, and parsley in a medium bowl.
Combine the lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic in a small bowl and briskly whisk.
Drain any excess water from the bulgur and combine it with the tomatoes and greens. Add the lemon dressing and toss to combine.
Combine the water and tahini in a small mixing bowl and whisk till they are fully combined.
Serve the falafel on the salad with several tablespoons of tahini dressing.
*I used one plum tomato and a handful of yellow and red cherry tomatoes