I made this with spanakopita but this could be a meal in itself with the addition of a nice salad. The yogurt sauce makes plenty and could be used to compliment any type of meat or chicken flavored with Greek seasonings such as kebabs. Or use it as a spread on top of a greek burger...nummmm. Must try that next time.
Baked falafel patties with Tzatziki (greek yogurt and cucumber sauce)
Makes 12 Falafel patties
Falafel recipe from The Foods of Israel Today, found on Epicurious.com
1 15-oz can of chickpeas
1 cup chopped onion
4 tbs chopped parsley
1/2 tsp. table salt
1 tsp chili powder
4 cloves minced garlic (about 2 tsp.)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. baking powder
3-6 T whole wheat flour (or more, if the balls don't stick together well enough)
olive oil, for spraying baking sheet
Rinse chickpeas under water and dry off with a towel and set aside in a bowl.
Sautee onion and garlic in little bit of oil, let cool. Then put in a bowl of a food processor with a steel blade attached and PULSE with parsley, cilantro, salt, garlic, chili powder and cumin. Then add chickpeas and pulse until mixture is well-chopped and combined, but not pureed together. Then put into a bowl and sprinkle over baking powder and 3 T flour and mix. Test one ball to see if mixture holds together and doesn’t stick to your hand, if not add more flour until it does. (I didn't need to add more flour.) Put mixture into a plastic bowl with a tight-fitting lid and chill several hours or overnight. (I chilled mine for only a couple hours)
(I also made a test patty like I always do and the flavors were spot on. No need to add any extra salt or seasonings)
When ready to bake Falafel, preheat oven or toaster oven to 400F. (I preheated the baking sheet too so the bottom of the falafel would be nice and crispy as soon as it hit the pan) Press the mixture into patties about 2-inches wide and 1/2 inch thick. Put patties on pre-heated pan sprayed with olive oil (PAM) and bake until lightly browned and cooked through. Bake for 26 minutes, turning after 13 minutes.
UPDATE: I broke up the leftover falafels into bite size pieces and mixed them in a mesclun mix salad with turkey and ham deli meat, a little bit of grated gruyere cheese and tossed it all with the tzatziki as the dressing and it was divine!!! I was surprised to see the tzatziki worked so well as a dressing. So good and healthy...Num Num!!!
Tzatziki (Greek Yogurt and Cucumber Sauce)
Makes about 3 1/2 cups (I only made half the recipe and it was waaay more then enough)
Adapted from here
3 cups Greek Yogurt
juice of one lemon (about 3 T)
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 medium cucumbers, seeded and diced
about 1 T kosher salt for salting cucumbers
1 T finely chopped fresh dill (can substitute mint leaves for a slightly different version)
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Peel cucumbers, then cut in half lengthwise and take a small spoon and scrape out seeds. Discard seeds. (If you use the small seedless or European cucumbers with few seeds, you can skip this step.) Slice cucumbers, then put in a colander, sprinkle on 1 T salt, and let stand for 30 minutes to draw out water. Drain well and wipe dry with paper towel.
In food processor with steel blade, add cucumbers, garlic, lemon juice, dill, and a few grinds of black pepper. Process until well blended, then stir this mixture into the yogurt. Taste before adding any extra salt, then salt if needed. Place in refrigerator for at least two hours before serving so flavors can blend. (This resting time is very important.)
This will keep for a few days or more in the refrigerator, but you will need to drain off any water and stir each time you use it.