The accompanying dip, simply flavoured with harissa paste, contrasts wonderfully with the sweetness of the peas and its light pink colour looks fabulous against the intense green of the falafel.
1 tblsp vegetable oil
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 large handful of mint, finely chopped
1 tblsp sesame seeds
50g fresh breadcrumbs
1 large egg
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
4-5 tblsp vegetable oil for shallow frying
150g natural Greek-style yoghurt
1 tblsp harissa paste
- Place fresh peas (if using) in a small saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer for 1 minute, then remove from the heat and drain. If using frozen peas, place in a bowl and cover with boiling water and allow to defrost. Drain and set aside.
- Place the vegetable oil in a small frying pan over a moderate heat and gently cook the shallot for a couple of minutes until beginning to soften. Add the chilli and cumin and cook for a further minute.
- Place the shallot mixture and the peas into a food processor and pulse a few times to break the peas down and mix everything together. Add the chopped mint, sesame seeds, breadcrumbs, egg and pulse again to form a chunky paste. Do not purée the peas as you want them to retain a bit of texture.
- To fry the falafel, heat a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large frying pan over a moderate heat. Drop a tablespoons of the falafel mixture into the oil and fry for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown. Place onto a plate lined with kitchen roll to drain. Place in a warm oven so that they don't go cold. Fry the falafel in batches until all the mixture has been used up. Serve warm with some of the harissa dip.
- Mix the yoghurt and harissa paste together and place in a bowl alongside the falafel.
Makes 16-18 falafel.