How to Make Authentic Falafel and Israeli Chopped Salad

Falafel and Israeli Chopped Salad

When my family and I go back to Israel, our first stop is a little roadside falafel stand in Haifa, on the Carmel. Hot, crunchy with a bright green center, it’s stuffed into pillowy pita bread, chopped Israeli salad, pickles and drizzled generously with tangy tahini. It’s possibly my favorite food on the planet and I have finally perfected my recipe. Enjoy it as much as I do!


1 1/2 cups dried chickpeas

1/2 large onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, peeled

1 large handful flat leaf parsley, chopped

1 extra large handful cilantro, chopped

2 tbsp ground cumin

2 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp baking powder

3 tbsp water

3 tbsp flour

1 tsp sesame seeds

generous salt

oil for frying (light olive oil, sunflower oil)


1/2 cup toasted sesame paste (tahini)

juice from one lemon


water (about 1/2 cup)


Soak the chickpeas in water overnight. Drain the water and rinse well.  Place in a food processor and pulse until coarse. Add the other ingredients and pulse until well combined. Place in a bowl and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes. Meanwhile heat your oil to 350 degrees and while it heats, make the tahini.

When the oil is ready, scoop the falafel mixture in a ball, about the size of a third of the palm of your hand. Place one in the oil and fry until brown. Remove and drain on paper towels, season with salt. Taste this one and add salt the rest of the falafel mixture if needed. Fry the remaining mixture in batches. Serve with tahini, chopped salad, pickles and pita bread.

To make the tahini, add the sesame paste, lemon juice and generous sprinkle of salt to a medium size mixing bowl. Add generous splashes of water and stir vigorously until you have the consistency of honey. Taste and add salt if necessary.

Israeli Chopped Salad

2 medium ripe organic tomatoes, diced into 1cm cube (about 1 cup)

2 small Persian cucumbers diced into 1cm cube (about 1 cup)

2 tbsp flat leaf parsley, chopped

2 tbsp dill, chopped

juice from 1/2 lemon

1 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

salt to taste


Combine all the ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl and gently toss. Allow to sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving.


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