There is something magical about a simple homemade meal. Its comforting, its fresh and best of all you know exactly what went into it. This dish by Jamie was comfort food for me on several levels. It is purely vegetarian (which I loved after having had too much meat the week before); it requires minimal ingredients; and freshness oozes out of every element that creates this dish.
I decided to play a bit with this recipe and make it my own. I wasn’t convinced enough to follow Jamie word by word this time. Sometimes as a cook you must learn to trust your instincts and take risks. I did. And loved the end product!
I decided to ditch harissa and all spice and instead went with my Indian spices of coriander and cumin. For the tomato salsa I simply mixed the chopped ingredients instead of blending it all which gave me a wonderful fresh salad to go with my wraps.
The marriage of chickpeas, beans and spices is a happy one but the party really began when the falafels were combined with the yoghurt & tahini dip. Tahini is a sesame spread that is primarily used to make hummus and it can be found in the health section of supermarkets.
Makes 14 falafels, Serves 2
1 can chickpeas
1 can mixed beans or broad beans
2 cloves of garlic
1 small red onion
2 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 teaspoon red chilli powder
1/2 cup plain flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarb of soda
salt to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 packet wholemeal tortillas
4 spring onions
1 cup greek yoghurt
1 tablespoon tahini
1 punnet grape tomatoes
4 sprigs of mint leaves
1 clove garlic
Heat oil in a pan and saute onions with garlic on a medium flame until caramelised. Blitz the chickpeas and beans and combine with the remaining ingredients. Add the onion garlic mix to this. Add more flour if the mixture is too wet. Leave it in the fridge for 10 minutes to firm up. Make small balls in your palm and flatten them before placing on a pan on medium heat with oil. Turn over once each side is cooked and turns dark brown. Remove from heat when both sides have changed colour.
Cut the veges into bite size peices and grill them on a pan on high heat. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat when veges are charred.
Cut the tomatoes, mince the garlic and combine with remaining ingredients in a bowl. Season to taste.
Combine yoghurt and tahini in a small bowl.
Warm up the tortillas on a pan or in the microwave. Place 2 falafels on top followed by grilled veges and the yoghurt dip. Fold it up and serve with some tomato salad on the side.
Jamie Oliver’s recipe can be found here: