Baked Falafel with an Italian Twist

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Isn’t it a lovely day for a picnic? How many times a year can you say that? When we think of picnics, we think of blue skies, slightly damp grass, scratchy rugs, Scotch eggs, baguettes, pate, someone’s homemade pasta salad, sausage rolls, mini rolls, little sandwiches, warm wine, trio of dip selection from Sainsburys (cheese + chive one is a winner), crisps and quiche! (And eating as fast as you can before the bees, ants and other wildlife attack.) So far so predictable? Let’s try something new! (And yummy.)

As you will remember from this post, we fell in love with bulgur wheat and all its proteiny goodness (when we discovered it in the back of our cupboard). So we’ve been thinking of lots of ways to incorporate it in our dishes. Falafel is a street food favourite and we have loved it since our days in Saudi Arabia so we decided to make it our own, incorporating bulgur wheat with an Italian twist. These are delicious, hot, cold (eaten out of the fridge a la Nigella), in a pitta or at a picnic!

Makes 13 (eep) yummy falafel balls

1/2 cup coarse bulgur wheat, cooked
1 cup canned kidney beans
7 pieces chopped sundried tomatoes
5 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tsp green pesto
1 heaped tbsp Pecorino Romano
salt, pepper and paprika to taste

  1. Preheat the oven to 150C (fan assisted).
  2. In a bowl, add the bulgur wheat, kidney beans, sundried tomato and garlic.
  3. Using a sharp metal potato masher, mash the ingredients together as smoothly as you can.
  4. Add the pesto, Pecorino Romano, salt, pepper and paprika. Mix thoroughly.
  5. Drop teaspoonfuls of the mixture onto a greased baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the outside of the falafel balls are golden brown but firm.
  7. Enjoy immediately with ketchup, hot sauce or any condiment you prefer!

So what do you think? Feel free to share your questions and comments below! We’d love to hear what you have to say.

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