Pan-grilling, rather than the classic deep-frying method, makes these falafel healthier. For a gluten-free alternative, serve the patties on top of a salad of romaine lettuce, tomatoes, olive and cucumbers and drizzle the lemon-tahini sauce on top.
Falafel Burgers with Lemon-Tahini Sauce
For the lemon-tahini sauce:
1/3 cup (3 oz./90 g.) tahini
1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml.) lemon juice
3 Tbs. plain yogurt
1 clove garlic
Salt and freshly ground pepper
For the falafel burgers:
2 cans (14 oz./440 g. each) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 red onion, chopped
2 Tbs. fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
5 fresh mint leaves
2 cloves garlic
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 Tbs. ground cumin
2 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup (3/4 oz./20 g.) whole-wheat panko bread crumbs
Nonstick cooking spray
4 whole-wheat pita breads, toasted, cut in half, and split to form pockets
Thinly sliced red onion, sliced Roma tomatoes, and romaine lettuce, for serving
To make the sauce, in a blender, combine the tahini, lemon juice, yogurt and garlic and puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
To make the burgers, in a food processor, combine the chickpeas, onion, parsley, mint, garlic, lemon zest and juice, cumin, coriander, paprika, salt and pepper. Process until smooth and transfer to a large bowl. Add the egg and bread crumbs and stir to combine. Form into 8 patties.
Warm a stove-top grill pan over medium-high heat and coat with cooking spray. Cook the burgers, carefully turning once, until golden-brown, about 4 minutes per side.
To serve, put each burger in a pita pocket, top with a generous helping of sauce, and fill with red onion, tomato slices, and lettuce. Serves 8.
Find more wholesome recipes for every day of the year in our new cookbook, Healthy Dish of the Day, by Kate McMillan.