Updated: Jan 26
AKA Chickpea Wraps with Falafels and Hummus
I decided it was time I started to share a few recipes with you. They won't all be of Indian food, but they will all be plant-based and gluten-free.
I see a lot of people starting out on Gluten-Free diets or Plant-Based diets that aren't sure where to start.
My first tip would be rip up the rule book!
Don't feel you HAVE to have a particular type of food for any meal.
For example. For breakfast today I had falafels with chickpea pancakes, hummus, courgettes and spinach. It was simple, affordable and delish. I don't do cereals anymore.
If you are time poor and have a little more cash you can buy ready-made falafels and a tub of roasted veg.
If you have a bit more time and want to save money you can make the falafels yourself and quickly cook courgettes and peppers etc.
The other benefit to making Falafels, and even hummus yourself (recipe to come soon) is you can buy them from a zero waste shop and limit your plastic packaging. And you can buy the veg plastic free too. The chickpea flour comes in paper packaging which at least makes it easier to recycle.
Cost per portion is approx £0.75 each.
CHICKPEA FLOUR (BESAN) - This can be found in most supermarkets. Look in the regular baking aisle, the Free-From aisle or the World Food Aisle. (You can find very good value packs in the free-from aisle, but if you're coeliac or have an allergy you may want to ensure you use a certified Gluten-Free one).
MAKES APPROX 24 FALAFELS
500g Chickpeas (2 tins or pre-cooked dried chickpeas)
2 medium Onions (white or red)
80g L (I used Doves farm gluten free, but you can use others)
50g fresh coriander
3 TSP Ground cumin
2 TSP Ground coriander
1 TBSP oil
Salt to taste
If you're using dried chickpeas soak and cook them until soft
Once chickpeas are soft or if you're using tinned chickpeas finely chop the onions and fry in a little oil til translucent
Chop the coriander finely
Add the flour, coriander, spices and chickpeas together.
Mush the chickpea mixture together in a processor/with a potato masher/ with your hands if they are soft.
Make sure its not too smooth, it's nice if the mixture is a little chunky.
In a frying pan cook a little bit of the falafel mix. Let it brown. Once cooled down taste it.
Does it need more flavour? Add a little salt. Mix it in. Cook another little bit to taste. Maybe a splash of lemon juice, or a bit of pepper, or even chilli? What flavours do you like?
Or keep it simple, don't flavour them, keep the flavours for the other parts of the dish.
Leave the finished falafel mix in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Make small balls of falafel mix and flatten. Cook in a frying pan with or without oil. 3-4 mins on each side or until browned.
You can also oven cook them for 15-20 mins at 180. You can also deep-fry til golden.
CHICKPEA PANCAKE RECIPE
1 CUP Chickpea flour (besan)
1 CUP Water
1 TBSP Oil
0.5 TSP Cumin (optional)
Pinch of salt
Sieve Chickpea flour in to a mixing bowl
Add other ingredients
Mix with a balloon whisk
Let sit for 30 mins
Heat a frying pan. Add a touch of oil of you wish. Pour batter in to the pan and cook like a regular pancake.
Salt to taste
Cut courgette in to three pieces
Stand on end and cut in to strips
Heat a frying pan until hot
Use a dash of oil
Place courgette slices flat in pan with a little sprinkle of salt (omit salt if you want to)
Cook for 3 minutes, check for browning on underside and flip over and cook on the other side.
COMPILE YOUR DISH
1 Handful Spinach
Cook falafels and courgette put to one side
Cook a chickpea pancake
Lay pancake on a plate, top with hummus and spinach
Layer 4 Falafels and courgette in a row down the middle of the pancake
Roll edges over
Dinner is served!
Cook different vegetables, peppers are great sliced and then charred in a pan. Same for aubergine.
Use raw vegetables and salad like lettuce, carrot, cucumber, onions, other salad greens or seasonal veg.
Make in to a meal with steamed rice and more veg options
Great for breakfasts and lunch. Especially if everything is pre made and ready to pull together.
Add mayo, lemon juice, different flavour hummus, salad dressings, sweet chilli sauce
Falafels can be made in batches and kept in the fridge for several days. They can also be frozen either as mix or cooked patties.
The chickpea pancakes can be used with lots of different meals and make a great replacement for tortillas and are super cheap.
Pan Frying vegetables like courgettes, peppers and aubergine can be done in bulk and then kept in the fridge, great as side dishes, in salads, with pasta, in stir-frys. Just re-heat slightly or serve cold.
If you fry without oil or very little oil could let the kids have a go at cooking the falafels and vegetables in a frying pan.
It's nice to put all the cooked ingredients on the table and let the family help themselves and make their own flavour combinations with rice and more veg/salad as recommended above in variations.