September 25, 2018
A fresh filet of salmon makes a quick, healthy weeknight dinner, but if you cook extra, it also provides very useful leftovers. Cooked, flaked salmon makes a delicious sandwich, can be added to cold or hot pasta (try it with some crumbled Boursin cheese, which melts into the warm pasta), can be turned into fish cakes with leftover mashed potatoes, or into unique falafel with a can of chickpeas and a few herbs and spices.
Often, falafel is made with chickpea flour, but canned chickpeas are more consistent, readily available and inexpensive. The mixture can be pulsed in the food processor in much the same way you’d make a batch of hummus; keep it chunky if you like your falafel to have some texture, or puree it until smooth. If the mixture is too loose to form a patty, simply add a spoonful of flour and let the mixture sit for a few minutes, until it firms up. Falafel can be brushed with oil and baked in the oven, but they’re irresistibly crispy done on the stovetop. Serve them wrapped in a soft pita with tzatziki, chopped tomato and ribbons of cucumber, or on their own with garlicky tzatziki for dipping.
1 19 oz (540 mL) can chickpeas, drained
1/2-1 cup flaked cooked salmon
2 green onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1/4-1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp salt
pinch dried chili flakes
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
canola oil, for frying
Combine the chickpeas, salmon, onions, garlic, cilantro, cumin, salt and chili flakes in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until combined but still chunky, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Add the flour and baking powder and pulse until you have a soft mixture.
Roll the dough into meatball-sized balls and flatten each slightly, making a little patty.
Heat about 1/2-inch of canola or other mild vegetable oil in a heavy skillet until it’s hot but not smoking. Test with a bit of falafel mixture or a scrap of bread – the oil should bubble up around it. Cook the falafel for a few minutes per side, until golden and crisp. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate.
Serve warm, with tzatziki or thick plain Greek yogurt spiked with lemon, garlic, tahini and salt. Makes about 20 falafel.
- Julie Van Rosendaal
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