Ugh, guys, I am so mean! My husband has been working pretty long hours and weekends and stuff, but a week or two ago he made sure to get home from work by 8:30 to watch the Monday night Bears-Cowboys game. So did I make some pizza, burgers, anything utilizing the prefix “buffalo?” Not this girl! I served him up a heaping plate of chickpeas and cucumbers. There wasn’t even any meat in it. Basically I am the worst.
However, if we judged this falafel pie using a regular-health-weeknight-dinner standard, rather than a highly-anticipated-Monday-night-football-game-dinner standard, it actually rocks pretty hard. I loved the falafel crust, and my first experience making homemade tzatziki worked very well. Luckily for me, he was a good sport and ate it up without so much as mentioning my epic meanness. Maybe the Bears victory had something to do with it…
FALAFEL PIE (recipe from Heat Oven to 350)
1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 large onion, roughly chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp salt
crushed red pepper flakes to taste
4 cloves of garlic
1 tsp cumin
3/4 tsp baking powder
4 – 5 tablespoons flour
1 tomato, roughly chopped
1 cucumber, roughly chopped
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, roughly chopped
3/4 cup hummus (prepared or homemade)
cucumber sauce/tzatziki for drizzling (suggested recipe below)
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Place chickpeas, onion, parsley, cilantro, salt, red pepper flakes, garlic and cumin in bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade. Process until blended but not pureed — texture should be rougher than hummus.
3. Sprinkle in baking powder and 4 tablespoons of flour, and pulse. Add enough flour so dough can be formed into ball.
4. Coat bottom of 9″ pie pan with vegetable oil. Add falafel mix into pie pan and pat it down until flat. Brush top of falafel mix with more oil and sprinkle lightly with salt. Bake just until top appears dry and the falafel is firm to, about 20-23 minutes.
5. Top baked falafel with hummus, cucumbers, tomatoes, and olives. Top with cucumber sauce (I spooned it into a ziploc bag and cut the corner of the bag with scissors to squeeze out uniformly) and serve.
QUICK CUCUMBER SAUCE (TZATZIKI):
1 cup plain, nonfat Greek yogurt
1/4 a large cucumber
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
pinch cayenne pepper
Grate cucumber on box grater and squeeze out extra water with paper towels. Add all ingredients to medium bowl and stir to combine. Use immediately or refrigerate.
Not exactly your typical football food, but I sure liked it! I think next time I may even ditch the hummus (since the whole base is basically just baked hummus) and top it with the tzatziki instead. Or maybe olive tapenade!