Berlin is perhaps best known from a food perspective for its Döner shops that are on nearly every block. They’re a nod to the vast history and current reality that Berlin is a hub for immigration. One of my favorite places has been closed during COVID and I’ve been craving their falafel teller (platter). In an attempt to find a recipe that leans heavily on seasonal ingredients, I stumbled on Silvena Rowe’s recipe which you find here.
3 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground allspice
2.2lb (1kg) swiss chard
100g chickpea flour
3 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup hemp hearts
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 14oz can chickpeas, lightly mashed
3 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp tahini
15 batons pickled turnips
25 leaves romaine
Heat oven to 400°F. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a skillet and sauté the onion, cumin, and allspice for 1-2 minutes on medium heat. Slice the chard and toss into the pot. Cook for 2 minutes or until soft.
In a medium pot bring the almond milk to boil and reduce to a simmer. Slowly, whisk in the chickpea flour to form a smooth paste. Cook for around 5 minutes stirring slowly but continuously.
Let the paste cool and then mix into the spiced onion mixture from before, chickpeas, lemon juice, and hemp seeds. Form into golf-ball-sized balls and arrange on a baking sheet. Ideally you’d let them rest for a few hours, but life is life and you might just rush through this step. No worries.
Let the paste cool and then mix into the spiced onion mixture from before, chickpeas, lemon juice, and hemp seeds. Form into golf-ball-sized balls and arrange on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Ideally you’d let them rest for a few hours, but life is life and you might just rush through this step. No worries.
Cook the balls for 15-30 minutes until they are golden brown and crispy on the outside.
To make the tahini sauce, mix the tahini with the lemon juice and add water until your desired consistency. Mix well and season with salt. To plate, place the leaves of romaine, plate with the falafels, pickled turnips, and top with a drizzle of the tahini sauce.
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- Julia Feld