Detox Recipe: Beetroot Falafel
The Detox Kitchen Bible Recipe: delicious and healthy vegetarian recipe for homemade falafel
SERVES 4 • 385 calories per serving
This recipe is the result of a heroic number of falafel trials. The main reason falafels go wrong is taking a short cut and using tinned chickpeas. This always results in wet, mushy, sad-looking falafels. But if you start with dried chickpeas, you will end up with wonderfully crisp, round, textured falafels. We’ve added beetroot to these for its bright red colour. Beetroot is a rich source of folate, which is used in the production of red blood cells and helps ward off anaemia.
200g dried chickpeas
2 raw beetroots, peeled and finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced
50g cashew nuts
30g home-shelled pistachio nuts
1 tsp olive oil
½ red onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 egg, lightly beaten with a fork
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp sesame seeds
For the yogurt dip
3 tbsp plain soya yogurt
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp tahini
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and finely sliced
A pinch of ground cumin
A pinch of salt
Iceberg lettuce, separated into leaves
Fresh mint leaves
1. Soak the chickpeas in cold water overnight. The next day, drain and place them in a fresh pan of cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 50 minutes until soft. Drain and pat dry with kitchen paper.
2. Preheat your oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
3. Place the chickpeas, beetroot, carrot, cashew nuts and pistachios in a blender and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
4. Heat the olive oil in a non-stick frying pan and cook the onion and garlic until soft. Add them to the bowl along with the rest of the ingredients (except the sesame seeds). Mix together well.
5. Shape the mixture into small balls and roll them in the sesame seeds to coat. Place the balls on the baking tray and bake in the heated oven for 50 minutes.
6. Meanwhile, make the dip by mixing together all the ingredients for it.
7. Serve the falafels with the dip, lettuce leaves and mint. To eat, place three mint leaves on a lettuce leaf, set a falafel on this, add a dollop of yogurt dip and wrap up.
Rich in Vitamins B1 (thiamin) and B6 • Folate • Potassium • Iron • Magnesium • Beta-carotene • Phytoestrogens • Beta-sitosterol • Nitrates
Extract taken from The Detox Kitchen Bible by Lily Simpson and Rob Hobson published by Bloomsbury, £25.00, Hardback
Photography © Keiko Oikawa