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I just died and went to chick pea heaven.

All while experiencing a Mediterranean flavored party in my mouth, followed by a garlic overdose.

Also while catching up on the last 3 weeks of Gossip Girl.

While wearing a Greek yogurt face mask.

Just kidding. I didn’t really put that on my face. Though I hear people do. But, in my foodie opinion that would be a total waste of this delicious tzatziki sauce. Which I ate half of before the falafels were even finished. So chances are I still have remnants of it on my face, hopefully giving my skin that post yogurt glow a face mask should.

This combination of these unusual weeknight events can only mean one thing.

A.K. is not home. This is a Mila dinner.

The tzatziki is so creamy and delicious. I could have stopped right there with my dinner and not even bothered with the falafels.

Luckily I didn’t.

Because layering it on the falafels was even better. The mixture of rich flavor was unbelievable. I wish I could post the smells coming from my kitchen on this blog.

I may still be drooling as I write this.

Call them what you wish (garbanzo beans, chick peas, ceci bean, or chana in Indian restaurants), either way they are ah-mazing.  Not only are they delicious, they are also a very good source of folic acid, fiber, protein, as well as, minerals such as iron, copper, zinc, and magnesium. Yummy.

I’ve been wanting to make my own falafels for a while. But this meal isn’t A.K. friendly (where’s the meat?), so this week while he was away, it was the perfect opportunity to test it out.

Based on these amazing results, I may have to try a meat gyro version. I can’t let A.K. miss the one night I actually make a meal that tastes as good as it looks (and smells).

Here is the recipe I made, based on an adaptation of a whole bunch of recipes I browsed through on allrecipes.com and the foodnetwork.

Start with the Tzatziki Sauce, so it can have time to chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced finely (I probably used about 9 due to my garlic addiction)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. white pepper
  • 1 cup greek yogurt, strained
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 cucumbers, diced
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh dill

Preparation:

Combine olive oil, vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Mix until well combined. Using a whisk, blend the yogurt with the sour cream. Add the olive oil mixture to the yogurt mixture and mix well. Finally, add the cucumber and chopped fresh dill. Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Meanwhile, make the falafels…

Falafels!

Ingredients:

  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 dash pepper
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup dry bread crumbs
  • oil for frying

Directions:

In a large bowl mash chickpeas until thick and pasty; don’t use a blender, as the consistency will be too thin.

Next chop onion into small pieces. Stir onion, cilantro and garlic into mashed chickpeas until smooth.

In a small bowl combine egg, salt, pepper, cayenne, lemon juice and baking powder. Stir into chickpea mixture along with olive oil. Slowly add bread crumbs until mixture is not sticky but will hold together; add more or less bread crumbs, as needed.

Form mixture into 8 balls and then flatten into patties.

Heat oil in a large skillet (enough to create a layer covering the surface of the pan) over medium-high heat. Wait until the oil is hot, and then fry patties until brown on both sides.

Place onto a plate with paper towels to soak up all the oil from frying.

Enjoy: in a pita, on a pita, next to a pita

Please try it and let me know what you think. Eating something this delicious alone is not as fun.
Hurry back, A.K. I miss you.
 
How do you spend evenings alone?
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