Taking inspiration from traditional Italian arancini recipes, these fried chickpea falafels will surprise you with a centre of melted bocconcini.
- 1½ cups dried chickpeas, soaked overnight, drained
- ¼ cup roughly chopped coriander, plus extra leaves to serve
- ¼ cup roughly chopped parsley, plus extra leaves to serve
- 1 spring onion, roughly chopped
- 1 red chilli, deseeded, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander seed
- 1 tsp bicarb soda
- 1 lemon, zested
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 3 pieces bocconcini
- vegetable oil, to fry
- 1 cup unsweetened yoghurt
- ½ tsp ground sumac
- ½ tsp ground chilli
- 1 tbsp tahini
- extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
You will need to start this recipe 1 day ahead
Soaking time: overnight
- Place chickpeas, coriander, parsley, spring onion, chilli, garlic, cumin, coriander seed, bicarb soda, lemon zest, and olive oil into a large jar. Season with salt and pepper. Use a stick blender to combine.
- Transfer the blended mixture into a bowl (it’s okay if there are still a few chunky bits). Scoop out about a handful of mixture and use your hands to shape into a firm patty. Press down in the middle to make a well. Place a piece of bocconcini into the well and squeeze the falafel mixture around the cheese, to make a crust about 5 mm thick. Smooth the falafel mix around the cheese and ensure there are no holes. Repeat with remaining falafel mixture and bocconcini.
- Add enough vegetable oil to a saucepan to cover falafels. Preheat to 170°C. Gently lower falafels into hot oil, and cook for 3–5 minutes, turning occasionally to cook evenly, until golden brown.
- Drain the falafels on paper towel and season with salt.
- In a bowl combine the yoghurt, sumac, chilli, tahini and salt and pepper to taste.
- To serve, place a large scoop of the yoghurt sauce in the centre a dish. Create a well in the centre of the sauce for the falafel. Season with salt and drizzle some extra virgin olive oil around the sides and garnish with extra herbs.
This recipe is from Richo's Bar Snacks on SBS Food (Channel 33). Stream episodes via SBS On Demand.