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Unfried Falafel Pockets

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Categories: Vegetarian
Type: Sandwiches

It takes a little bit of work to make falafel, but this healthy version makes these pockets delicious.

Serves: 6 servings

Ingredients:

  • Nonstick olive oil cooking spray
  • 3 whole wheat or oat bran pita pockets (6-inch rounds), cut in half
  • 18 thin slices cucumber
  • 6 slices tomato
  • 1 1/2 cups alfalfa sprouts or shredded romaine lettuce
  • FALAFEL MIXTURE
  • 1 can (19 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 1 cup diced cooked sweet potato (about 1 medium)
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons crushed fresh garlic
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup toasted wheat germ
  • DRESSING
  • 1/4 cup plain nonfat yogurt
  • 2-3 tablespoons toasted sesame tahini
  • 2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed fresh garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

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Directions:

  1. To make the dressing, place all of the dressing ingredients in a blender or mini-food processor, and blend until smooth. Set aside.
  2. To make the falafel, place all of the falafel mixture ingredients except for the wheat germ in a food processor, and process until puréed, but still slightly chunky. Add a few teaspoons of plain yogurt or water if the mixture seems too dry to shape into patties.
  3. Coat a large baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray, and set aside.
  4. Place the wheat germ in a shallow dish. Shape the falafel mixture into 12 (2-inch) patties and, 1 at a time, lay the patties in the dish containing the wheat germ, turning to coat both sides. Arrange the patties in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.
  5. Spray the tops of the patties lightly with olive oil cooking spray, and bake at 400°F for 10 minutes. Turn the patties, and bake for 10 additional minutes, or until nicely browned.
  6. To heat the pita pockets, place them on a microwave-safe plate. Cover with a damp paper towel, and microwave on high power for about 45 seconds, or until warm.
  7. Place 2 falafel patties in each pita half. Add 3 slices of cucumber, 1 slice of tomato, and 1/4 cup of sprouts or lettuce. Drizzle with the dressing, and serve.

excerpted from:

Excerpted from The Best-Kept Secrets of Healthy Cooking by Sandra Woodruff, R.D. Copyright � 2000 by Sandra Woodruff.

To order this book go to www.penguin.com. Get a 15% discount with the coupon code FENPARENT.

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