Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Falafel Pitas with Cucumber Dipping Sauce

I don't remember how I came across this recipe. Oh, I take that back. I think I had bookmarked a list of easy vegetarian dinners from the Cooking Light website and found it that way. I'm trying to work back in some more vegetarian meals into our dinners each week. I really like falafel, but I'd never tried making my own before. it sounded pretty easy from this recipe and most of the ingredients were things I had on hand (well, except the pita bread). Double bonus!!

Falafel Pitas with Cucumber Dipping Sauce

1/4 cup minced red onion
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 (15 1/2-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
1 (1-ounce) slice whole wheat bread, torn into pieces
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 (6-inch) whole wheat pitas, split
1 cup arugula
1/2 cup Cucumber-Yogurt Dressing

Combine first 10 ingredients in a food processor; pulse 6 times or until well blended (mixture will be wet).

Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Spoon about 1/3 cup chickpea mixture per patty into pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

Line each pita half with 1/4 cup arugula, add 1 patty to each pita half, and spoon 2 tablespoons Cucumber-Yogurt Dressing into each pita half.

Cucumber-Yogurt Dressing

1 cup plain fat-free yogurt
1/2 cup diced seedless cucumber
1/4 cup minced red onion
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Cover and chill.

Note: Nutritional analysis includes Cucumber-Yogurt Dressing.
Calories: 280
Calories from fat: 30%
Fat: 9.4g
Saturated fat: 1.2g
Monounsaturated fat: 5g
Polyunsaturated fat: 2.2g
Protein: 11.4g
Carbohydrate: 40.1g
Fiber: 7.3g
Cholesterol: 53mg
Iron: 3.3mg
Sodium: 592mg
Calcium: 81mg


Since the nutritional info was there on the website, I figured I'd include it for the recipe. I actually used whole wheat naan instead of pita bread because pita bread and I just don't get along. We have issues...always have, always will. I find naan much easier to work with and even a little tastier.

I wasn't really sure what my kids were going to think of this, but they both ate it pretty well. Especially after I gave them ketchup to dip their falafel in. I know, I know...ketchup with falafel?! But they ate it all and there wasn't a fight at the dinner table. Sometimes we moms do what we gotta do.

This was super easy to put together and really tasty. I'd definitely make it again, especially since for the most part it was made up of things I had in my fridge or pantry already!

Falafel mixture:

Falafel patties cooking away:

Mmmm...falafel pitas...

1 comment:

Rachel said...

I'll have to try that falafel - I've only tried to make it once (with raw beans) and it was AWFUL!! Those look good though.

And my son, who refused to eat beans, will eat falafel happily. Little does he know ;-)