Friday, February 3, 2012

Sweet Potato Falafel with Vegan Tzatziki Sauce

Oh yum, this meal is sure to be a crowd pleaser!  My one bit of advice is to read through all the directions first, because there are some "time sensitive" steps.  Please don't let this deter you...because with a little planning this is a great make-ahead meal!  Also, this meal freezes really go ahead, double it, I did!

For the Falafel:

(makes a lot, so feel free to halve the recipe)

4 medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed and poked with a fork
3 tsp cumin
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 tsp corriander
1/4-1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
juice of a lemon
1 3/4 cups of chickpea flour ( I used spelt)

sesame seeds (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Roast sweet potatoes for 45 minutes to 1 hour.  Cool and peel.  While potatoes are roasting, make the tzatziki sauce and set refrigerate.

Place peeled sweet potatoes in a large bowl, along with cumin, corriander, garlic, cilantro, lemon juice and flour.  Mash until relatively smooth and no large chunks remain.  Chill in the fridge for 1 hour or in the freezer for 20-30 minutes.  You want the mixture to firm up, otherwise its too sticky to form the balls.

Reheat the oven to 400 degrees and lightly spray a cookie sheet (or two).  For this part, you will need two spoons and to channel your inner Iron Chef!  (You are going to form the falafel the way many chefs serve ice cream.)  First, you take one spoon and scoop up some of the mixture.  Now, taking the second spoon, you are going to use the concave side to scrape down next to the other spoon, and form the sides of the balls.  You may need to do a few passes of this spoon scraping dance to form a nice (football-shaped) ball.   Place on cookie sheet and sprinkle with sesame seeds (optional).

Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until firm to the touch and golden brown.

For the Tzatziki Sauce:

1 cup raw cashews (soaked in warm water for 15-30 minutes)
1/2 cup thinly sliced cucumbers
juice of 2 lemons
1/2 tsp corriander
1 clove of garlic, chopped
1/2 cup water
a handful of fresh mint

Drain cashews and place them in a high powered blender or food processor, along with 1/2 cup of water and garlic.  Blend until smooth and creamy.  Pour into a small bowl and add in, cucumbers, lemon juice, corriander, s/p, and mint.  Season to taste.

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