When it comes to dinner, I like to really slow down. I sit. A candle is lit. The cell phone is powered off. A glass of sparkling water or wine rests in my hand. I relish in really savoring my meal, alongside some good conversation, or at least a good book.
Lunch is totally different. Lunch is fast and furious, usually made and consumed while standing up, and often devoured in no more then a few bites before rushing off to the next project. But just because a proper lunch isn’t on the schedule, doesn’t mean I’m not eating well! Instead, I rely on whole foods and superfoods to assemble in-the-moment creations that can be consumed quickly. Sometimes, this will be an avocado toast on sprouted bread with hemp seeds on top. Other times, it’s a nori roll with strangely delicious combinations tucked inside, like tofu and sauerkraut. But most often, it’s some combination of the minor meal prep I’ve done ahead of time. And one of my hands-down favorite things to get my meal prep on with is falafels — they’re just so easy to “tuck and roll” into just about anything.
On that note, last weekend I stopped by the Amazing Grass booth at Expo West (more on that soon!). I was ecstatic to see a few new products in place, a couple of which had serious lunchtime potential, like their new organic Kale Powder. Fresh greens are of course great, but not always practical to include in recipes. These new powdered greens on the other hand, means yessss, now you can put kale in basically everything. Brand new bag in hand, I rushed home and couldn’t wait to start adding it to recipes. These seriously upgraded falafals were the result, and I’ve been living like a green queen all week. Here’s how to make them.
I know what you’re thinking … “can you use fresh kale instead?” NO, my friend. Fresh kale has too much moisture to add any kind of significant amount to recipe like this. That’s precisely the advantage of having superfood ingredients like kale powder on hand – you don’t have to make a salad or a smoothie to eat healthfully – you can green-boost just about anything.
Makes 16 / Serves 4
¼ cup brown rice breadcrumbs (or regular breadcrumbs), divided
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ yellow onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1½ cups cooked chickpeas (or 1 15-ounce can, drained and rinsed)*
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons coriander
1 tablespoon Amazing Grass Kale Powder
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
Sea salt and ground black pepper
Preheat an oven to 425° F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment. Set aside 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs in a small bowl.
Warm the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until softened.
Add the cooked mixture to a food processor. Add the chickpeas, cumin, coriander, kale powder, lemon juice, parsley, 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs, ½ teaspoon sea salt, and ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper. Pulse the mixture to combine, but do not over-mix: you shouldn’t see any whole garbanzo beans, but there should be small bits of beans and parsley left in for texture. Shape the mixture into generous tablespoons, lightly roll in reserved breadcrumbs, flatten slightly, and place on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake the falafels for 10 minutes. Flip over with a spatula, then bake for 5-10 minutes longer, until falafels are a light golden brown. Let sit for a minimum of 5 minutes longer before serving – falafels will continue to firm as they cool.
To serve: These falafels are pretty flexible! Use a pita or lettuce leaves as a sandwich or wrap, top with shaved vegetables like red cabbage or carrots, and drizzle with tahini sauce. May be enjoyed hot or cold.
*Use cooked/canned beans with salt. If using unsalted beans, add additional salt to taste.
* Guest post thanks to Amazing Grass Ambassador Julie Morris – a Los Angeles-based natural foods chef, on-camera personality, and New York Times best-selling cookbook author.