Chickpea fritters

I still have to post our pictures from our 10-day trip to Egypt. A little bit of beach, a little bit of archaeology, a little bit of cultural craziness. As a result (and with our three cameras between me, Kyle and my daughter) I have something like 1000 pics to go through, arrgh.

In the meantime, here’s a recipe for chickpea fritters. I’m a big fan of falafel (which presented at breakfast once when I asked for Egyptian breakfast!) but it’s kind of a pain to make during the week because you have to soak the dried chickpeas, then grind them up in a food processor that I don’t have, then deep-fry them. Fine when you have some time, but when you need to make dinner in an hour? No way.

As a substitute, I use canned chickpeas during the week. I mash the chickpeas with a potato masher, then add the rest of ingredients and a little bit of flour. And if you have chickpea flour? Even better. I then pan-fry them in olive oil. They’re more like little veggie burgers than falafel, but they are still really good.

Serve these with a cucumber or red cabbage pickle and red onions for bite. Tahini sauce is great, but I’ve also used tzatziki here, and will post the recipe for that soon as well. I’ve used store-bought pita, but it’s much, much better if you toast it in the oven or also fry it in a little bit of oil.

Chickpea fritters
Makes about 12-14 2-inch fritters, about 2 for each sandwich

2 15-ounce (500 g) cans chickpeas
4 garlic cloves, minced
A large handful of parsley, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1 large egg
approx 1/4 cup flour or chickpea flour
1 teaspoon salt
A generous sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper

6-8 pitas, warmed in the oven
Tahini or tzatziki
Sliced red onions
Salad fixings

  1. Drain and rinse the chickpeas in a colander. Pour them into a large bowl. Mash with a potato masher. You may have to put a towel underneath the bowl to keep it from sliding around. If you don’t get all the beans mashed, don’t worry; it’s okay if there are a few whole ones.
  2. Add the garlic, parsley, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper. Mix it up really well with your hands. Add the egg and continue mixing. Add the flour and continue mashing the mixture around with your hands until all is well-combined.
  3. Form into 2-inch patties (smaller if you like).
  4. Heat an even layer of olive oil over medium heat in a large pan. When a tiny bit of the chickpea mixture starts bubbling and frying, the oil is ready.
  5. Fry the chickpeas until they are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes on each side. Drain on a wire rack.
  6. Serve in the warmed pitas with sauce and salad. I like to mash up the chickpeas just a little bit.