Baked Felafel Salad Platter
Felafels are such a calling for home for me.
I grew up in Dubai, fondly eating shawarmas, hummus and manakish- which is a heavy pastry bread filled with cheese and comes with Zaatar (typically) and various other toppings. Often, after karate lessons in the evening; when mum would pick my sister and I up, we would ask mum with hunger filled eyes, to take us to this popular Lebanese food joint close by, by the name Al Reef.
It became such a routine that as soon as we would jump into mum’s car, the first thing she would lovingly ask was if we wanted Manakish. And we would gleefully throw our hands in the air- YAAAYY!
As I grew up, I started vicariously enjoying Lebanese food- I moved to shawarmas (similar to a donair wrap), hummus, tabbouleh and fattoush salads from just manakish. OH! And in the most recent few years, halloumi cheese as well!
Felafels (minus the deep frying), hummus and shawarmas can be incredibly healthy for you! A key ingredient in felafels and hummus is chickpeas. Boy, are they delicious!
It is protein packed, but a complete protein when you combine it with carbohydrates- like wrap, or bread. That being said, it is not necessary to include a complete protein in every meal. Salads like fattoush and tabbouleh are also high in deliciousness AND good for you too! Maybe you could combine those with your healthy, baked felafels too. Plus, with all the extra veggies and greens they will totally rock your body healthy :D
Anyway, coming to Nanaimo in BC, I found that there weren’t very good Lebanese and Middle Eastern food options for my home cravings. When I’d go to Vancouver I’d simply freak out on it- and it would not necessarily be the healthiest. Then, last year, I tried some MAGICAL food.
Insert *BIG PAUSE*
I ate at Thirsty Camel, a small and welcoming local food joint that made some very delicious Middle Eastern food. It used to be one of my favorite places to go to eat but closed down. I crave their food so often, it’s ridiculous!
However, to save spending too much on my cravings (well, why should I when I am a food blogger, huh?) I just decided to make some felafels at home. Guess what?
This time, I even had a better blender ! YAAYY
Just in case you want to know…my last blender gave off smoke and a burn-y smell, when I tried making hummus in it. Couldn’t handle chickpea power I suppose…
Recently, I came across Taste Made’s snippet of a video on gluten free falafel wraps and decided to try making the falafel. This recipe by Laura Miller is so amazing! It is simple, and does not call for too much effort. However, there were two things I wanted to change-
- I don’t have celiac so I don’t have a problem with gluten.
- Using walnuts in the recipe didn’t exactly hold up my falafel together.
So, at Thirsty Camel, I had something called Tunisian Beetroots- which by the way, was MIND BLOWINGLY DELICIOUS; so much that I had to know how to make it at home. This, was the perfect opportunity to try!
What I have for you all is a very healthy and scrumptiously gratifying homemade recipe. It is easy to make; and you can even pre-make (like the night before) your tahini dressing and Tunisian beets and store it for a few days.
PS- The tahini dressing goes well with a crazy amount of meals! Yallah! Let’s make some YUMMY FOOD!
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The Writer Eats.