Walnut Falafel Pita with Pickled Onions

Walnut Falafel Pita with Pickled Onions
Anita Schecter
  • 45 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins,
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Yield: 4 Servings
Ratings (8)

I think I've already previously established that I'm a die hard falafel fan and would happily list it as my favorite savory food. The classic green, cilantro heavy, fried chickpea ball is my ultimate but I'm always up for fun variations. And I do especially love it when I find a falafel ball with a bit of a crunch. This walnut version is hearty, flavorful and has just a bit of that crunchy factor that makes this a taste treat. Enjoy!

What You'll Need

  • For the Walnut Falafel:
  • 1 cup chickpeas (canned is fine), rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro (chopped)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • For the Pickled Onions:
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 red onion (peeled and thin sliced)
  • For the Pita Sandwich:
  • 4 rounds of pita bread (sliced in half)
  • 1/2 seedless (English) cucumber (diced)
  • 2 tomatoes (diced)
  • For the Basic Tahini Sauce:
  • 1/4 cup tahini (sesame paste)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic (finely minced or grated)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How to Make It

To make the pickled red onions, add the sugar, apple cider vinegar, salt and water to a pot and heat until the sugar has fully dissolved. Stir in the sliced red onion and remove from the heat. Allow to cool before placing in a lidded jar or container in the refrigerator. It's ready to eat once cooled but will taste better the next day after the onions have had a chance to marinate.

To make the falafel, add the walnuts to a food processor and pulse a few times until the nuts are in small pieces but not dust.

Add the chickpeas, tahini, cilantro, garlic powder, ground cumin, baking powder, black pepper and salt. Pulse until combined.

If you're baking the falafel, pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees. Scoop the mixture into balls (approx. 1 oz.), using a scoop, and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15 minutes. If you're frying them, add the balls, a few at a time, to a pot of 350 degree oil and fry for a couple of minutes. You can also shallow fry these in a large skillet or cast iron pan.

Make the tahini sauce by combining the sesame paste with the water, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper.

Assemble the sandwiches by filling each pita half with the diced cucumbers and tomatoes, a few falafel balls and some of the pickled onions. Drizzle on the tahini sauce and serve.