Updated: Jul 9
Red Leaf Lettuce
Flat Leaf Parsley
Black Butte Chickpeas
Spicy Carrot Pickles
Amaltheia Organic Produce - Belgrade
Western Montana Growers Cooperative - Missoula
Lowdown Farm - Moiese
Z's Kitchen - Bozeman
Timeless Natural Food - Ulm
Farmented Foods - Bozeman
Herb & Butter Peas
up to 1 lb English peas, shelled
1-2 Tbs butter or olive oil
salt and pepper
3-4 Tbs fresh parsley and/or mint, minced
Bring about 1/2 inch of water to a boil in a large skillet, add a few pinches of salt and peas. Simmer, stirring and tasting until peas are tender, 4-5 minutes. Drain water, stir in butter or oil, herbs, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve as a side.
Falafel from Scratch
I often make boxed falafel mix as a quick weeknight meal. But falafel from scratch is surprisingly uncomplicated (you don't even cook the chickpeas!) and it's unparalleled in flavor. Falafel accompaniments are adaptable to whatever your household likes. As a kid, I ate falafel exclusively with lettuce, dill pickles, cheddar cheese, and ranch dressing. Not exactly authentic, but at the time it was delicious. Now I go for kalamata olives, feta, tzatziki sauce, hummus, pickled beets or carrots, and a pile of cucumbers and greens. Top it however you like it, authentic or not.
Falafel can be served wrapped in pita bread, tortillas, or lettuce leaves, as part of an appetizer platter, or on a salad. Use the suggestions below for topping inspiration, and check out these recipes for tzatziki sauce, tahini sauce, homemade pita bread.
Lettuce, spinach, or arugula
Diced bell pepper
Diced red onion
Minced parsley, dill, or mint
Kalamata olives or pickled veggies - any flavor you like.
Cubed or shredded cheddar or jack cheese
Goat cheese crumbles
Sauces or Spices
Hummus (you really can't overdo it on chickpeas)
Try za'atar or harissa spice blends mixed with a little plain yogurt or olive oil, or just sprinkled on top
Falafel from Scratch (Recipe)
A food processor makes quick work of these ingredients. The hardest part is remembering to soak the chickpeas ahead of time: soak for at least 8 hours, or up to 24. For best results, make the falafel mix first and refrigerate it while you prep the rest of your toppings, then fry the falafel just before serving. Serves 4-6.
8 oz (1 C) dried Black Butte Chickpeas, picked over for pebbles and rinsed
3/4 C fresh cilantro leaves and stems
1 C fresh parsley leaves
1/2 C yellow onion, roughly chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, chopped - sub 2-3 garlic scapes
1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 Tbs all-purpose flour, chickpea flour, or a GF flour blend
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 C or more vegetable oil or other high-heat oil, for frying
Place chickpeas in a large bowl or container and cover with water by 2 to 3 inches. Soak at room temperature for a minimum of 8 hours, up to 24 hours. Drain and rinse.
Pulse drained chickpeas, cilantro, parsley, onion, garlic, coriander, cumin, salt, and cayenne in food processor about 6 times. Scrape down sides of bowl and continue to pulse until mixture resembles coarse sand, with most pieces no larger than sesame seeds. If a few larger pieces sneak through, that's ok. Transfer to a bowl and stir in flour and baking powder. The mixture should hold its shape when formed into a ball or patty, but shouldn't be terribly sticky. Handle it gently to keep it from falling apart. Add a little water or flour to adjust texture if it's too dry or too wet. Cover and refrigerate for about 30 minutes, or up to 2 hours, before cooking.
I prefer to pan fry falafel, but you can also bake them with a light coating of oil, or deep fry them. To pan fry: heat 2-3 Tbs oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cast iron works well for this. Gently form falafel into patties about 1/2-inch thick and 2 inches across, give or take. Place in the hot oil with room between each to flip. Cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Flip patties over and cook another 3 minutes, or until browned. Remove to a paper towel to absorb any excess oil. Repeat process until all falafel is cooked. Serve while still warm and crispy.
**You can freeze uncooked falafel for future meals: form into balls or patties, place on a cookie sheet and freeze, then transfer to a ziplock bag and store in freezer. Remove as many as need and cook as desired.
More Recipes & Suggestions
Want more hummus? Make your own!
Mediterranean Salad with Black Butte Chickpeas (you can sub parsley for cilantro)
This Keema Aloo recipe uses peas and ground beef in a flavorful curry.