It’s a big call, I know. But these are without a doubt the best falafels in all of Sydney. Perfectly crunchy on the outside and soft and nutty on the inside – almost as good as my late grandmother’s, bless her soul.
The lovely people at La Roche Restaurant in Lakemba won’t part with their recipe (I don’t blame them!) so here is a recipe from one of my favourite websites Epicurious to tide you over. Or better still, take a trip to Lakemba, you won’t regret it (their address is under the recipe).
If you think you know a better place for falafel, or somewhere just as good, leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you and then we can all know a back up place to go!
Happy eating, Christie
makes 6 main course servings
1 1/4 cups dried chickpeas
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3/4 cup finely chopped onion (1 medium)
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (coriander)
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
About 6 cups vegetable oil
Soak chickpeas in cold water to cover by 2 inches in a bowl at room temperature at least 12 hours. Drain well in a colander.
Purée chickpeas with all remaining ingredients except oil in a food processor until as smooth as possible, about 2 minutes. Spread purée in a 15- by 10- by 1-inch baking pan and let dry, uncovered, 1 hour.
Scoop 2 tablespoons of purée onto a long sheet of wax paper, then press and pat with your fingers into a 2-inch-wide patty. (Pressing the purée will help the patty hold together when frying.) Make a small hole in center of patty with tip of your pinkie finger (to help cook evenly). Make more patties in same manner, arranging them in 1 layer on wax paper.
Heat about 1 inch oil in a large heavy pot (preferably cast-iron) until a cooking thermometer registers 170C. Working in batches of 4, gently drop patties into hot oil, then fry, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes, and transfer to paper towels to drain. Return oil to 170C between batches. Serve falafel warm or at room temperature.
Original recipe from Epicurious can be found here.
La Roche Lebanese Restaurant & Takeaway
Shop 5, 61-67 Haldon Street, Lakemba NSW 2195
Ph: 9759 9257