This is a hybrid of two recipes — one from The Gradual Vegetarian, by Lisa Tracy, and one from The Moosewood Cookbook, by Mollie Katzen — with a little improvisation thrown in ‘cos I didn’t have all the necessary ingredients to make either version and wasn’t in the mood to go to the grocery store tonight.

This is a vegan recipe, meaning it counts toward No. 60 (try one vegan recipe per week) on my 101 Things list … and because it was great, it also counts toward No. 62 (blog the recipes that turn out well).


1 can chickpeas
Five or six baby carrots
Two ribs of celery, cut into chunks
Five or six cloves of garlic
1/4 c. chopped onion (I used frozen, and it worked fine)
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tbsp. cumin
1 tbsp. paprika
A little ground red pepper
3 tbsp. dried parsley
1/4 c. flour
Canola oil for frying

Put all ingredients except oil in food processor and process until smooth. Remove batteries from smoke alarm. Turn on exhaust fan. (These are important steps in my house, as I seem to set off the smoke detector every time I fry anything.) Pour about a half-inch of oil into a heavy skillet and heat for a few minutes. Form falafel mixture into 1-inch balls, flatten a bit to make small patties, and fry in hot oil until browned and crispy on both sides. Makes about 30 pieces.

You can serve this with tahini sauce (2 parts tahini, 1 part water, and 2 parts lemon juice) for dipping, or stuff pita pockets with falafel, tomatoes, cucumbers, and tahini or tzatziki sauce to make a great sandwich … but I didn’t have any of that stuff lying around tonight, and I was too lazy to make a Wild Oats run, so I just sprinkled the finished product with a little Jane’s Crazy Mixed-Up Salt and scarfed it down all by itself.

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