Fava Bean Falafel Recipe

Spring is the perfect time to sub in abundant, seasonal fava beans for all your legume needs. Like chickpeas, fava beans make a delicious purée, and, when dried and reconstituted, an equally delicious falafel. Because they're similar in texture, fava beans and chickpeas can usually be substituted for each other. A blend of dried favas and seasonings will hold together as a fried ball better than fresh fava beans, but keep in mind they need to soak and rehydrate for a full 24 hours.

Serve these as an appetizer or hors d'oeuvre — they make awesome party food — or go the whole nine yards and cram them in a a nice warm pita with the works for a great vegetarian sandwich.

Fava Bean Falafel Recipe
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  • 1/2 pound dried fava beans
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 small onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • juice of half a lemon
  • salt to taste
  1. Soak the dried fava beans in abundant water for 24 hours.
  2. Drain well and put through a blender with the baking soda, chopped onion, cumin, hot pepper, parsley and lemon juice until it has the consistency of a coarse paste (not entirely smooth).
  3. Let the mix sit for half an hour, then add salt to taste.
  4. Form small, golf ball-sized balls out of the fava bean mixture and fry them in abundant oil for about five minutes each.
  5. Drain on paper towels and serve hot.
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