Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Made It! Falafel Waffles

Falafels. Hearing that word brings back fond memories of my trip to Israel in 2004... 
One afternoon, we stopped at a little hole in the wall for lunch, in Jerusalem. We had two choices: cheese bagels or falafels. Not being very adventures in my food choices I was getting tired of pizza, pizza bagels, pizza pitas, cheese bagels, cheese pitas, you get the idea. 

I decided to live it up and order the falafel. The deli guy smiled, pulled out a 5 gallon bucket of thick, chunky, tan stuff and dropped spoonfuls of it into a vat of hot oil, then began filling a warm pita with steak fries, cucumbers, tomatoes, tahini sauce and topped it with the fried falafel. As he handed the sandwich to me I was thinking oh my, I hope this is good... it smells good... I have no idea what it is... but there's a lot of it in that pita... we have a lot of walking to do today... and I don't want to be hungry!

Maybe it was the fact that we had already done a lot of walking that day, or that I was eating lunch in an open air market or that I had just done something I'd never done before, regarding food choices, (I was one who stuck to the staples) but that was the best meal I had the whole two weeks I was in Israel and one of the most memorable lunches I've ever had! Anyway, falafel is one of my favorite foods... and thats saying a lot, because I'm not a big fan of food in general, I'm trying to change that though, because David loves food! And we want our kids to enjoy all kinds of foods.

What is falafel? It's a mixture of deep fried chickpeas and herbs. I've tried many times to recreate that lunch and have come close but it's not quite the same. We've gone to several mediterranean restaurants, in search of the perfect falafel, Pita Pit is the American winner so far! 

As Caden began getting teeth and eating solids we started looking for a way to introduce him to some of our favorite foods, Santa Fe Style Mexican being at the top of the list. Even though I have a cool little falafel maker, I didn't want to cook with hot grease while little bear is cruising around the kitchen.

Then I found this lovely idea on Pinterest... The Falafel Waffle! It's super easy and fast!
1. Follow the directions on a box of dry falafel mix (usually found in the health food section of the grocery store). 
2. Spray your waffle iron with lots of oil. 
3. Add a large scoop of falafel4. Cook about 7 minutes, like you would a waffle. Please resist the desire to check the falafel waffle, if it's not done it will make a mess and you'll have to scrape it off your waffle iron.
5. Wash your waffle iron when you're finished, otherwise your next batch of real waffles will have a hint of falafel flavor.
6. Enjoy!. Hot. Cold. Dipped in hummus. With a plate of veggies. Added it to a pita. Crumbled over a leafy salad. 

I made roasted red pepper hummus too! And used my Good Cook can opener, no more sharp edges on the can = no more cut knuckles. A big bonus if you ask me!

Falafel Waffle: /
Photos By: Tammy Larsen

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