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Falafel Wrap

August 29, 2022

Falafel Wrap

There are a few Arabic staples more iconic and much-loved than the classic falafel wrap. Easy to whip up in minutes as a quick lunch or snack, they’re healthy, filling and incredibly delicious.

What is falafel wrap?

It would be a terrible crime to live in the Middle East and not know how to make one of its most famous specialties: the humble falafel wrap.  

Sold in endless cafes, takeaways and restaurants across the region, this tasty and delightfully casual delicacy features a mix of falafel, salad and tahina dressing, all neatly packed into an Arabic bread. 

Perfect for eating straight with your fingers and sharing chopped up with friends, this traditional street food favourite that will never, ever go out of fashion. 

But what actually are falafel made of?

Well, falafel are deep-fried balls or patties made from a mixture of mashed chickpeas or fava beans, herbs and spices. They taste incredible just dipped in a little sauce, work wonderfully in salads, and of course provide a superior filling for all kinds of sandwiches or wraps. 

Falafel is believed to have originated from Alexandria in Egypt in the late 19th century. It first appeared in Egyptian literature right after the British occupation in 1882, and it is said to be the simple yet filling delicacy that locals made for the visiting British officers.

Israel also calls falafel its national dish, and it is certainly extremely popular across many Middle Eastern countries, including Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and the UAE.

Key ingredients  

While making these irresistible fried nibbles yourself is relatively straightforward, we recommend that you save yourself the time and hassle and use our readymade ones instead. 

Sold in neat small patties and ready to fry, the healthy and wholesome falafels from Chef Middle East are high in nutrients and packed with fiber and protein.  

Adding a unique twist to this smooth and creamy favourite, we like to mix in two refreshing spoons of Les vergers Boirons Passion Fruit Purée and Lemon Purée to give this light and playful dressing a pleasantly fruity and slightly-sweet kick. 

Using freshly baked, lighter-than-air Arabic bread is also essential, and we like to stuff these aromatic pockets with our favourite topping combination of crunchy frisée lettuce, vibrant radishes and tangy pickled onions.  

Finally, those who like to add a bit of spice to their lunchtime absolutely mustn’t skip the final touch of adding some Olmeda Origenes Piparras Chillies. 

Particular to the north of Spain, this extraordinary pepper variety is widely used in Mediterranean cuisine. Packed with flavour and a beautiful shade of green, the ones from Omeda boast a distinctive tender texture and an unbeatable fiery kick. How many you add is entirely up to you.

Top tips from our chef

  • Use plenty of oil – For authentically crispy falafel, fry your ready-made patties in roughly three tablespoons of oil and in a large non-stick or cast-iron pan.  
  • Flip after two minutes - Leave a generous amount of space between the falafel patties, and turn them over with a spatula after around two minutes and when the bottom has gone a glorious golden brown. Then cook for a further minute, remove, and tuck them into your ready prepared bread pockets.
  • Serve straight away – Although we love falafel in all its forms, it has to be said that piping hot, fresh-from-the-pan falafel is far more comforting and heart-warming than cold falafel that has been left to sit for a while.  For this reason, we recommend making your sauce and chopping your salad before you start the frying process. This ensures you are ready to dive right in and take a bite as soon as it's done cooking. 
  • Experiment with your dressing and salad – Our recipe calls for a homemade tahina sauce, but an authentic Greek tzatziki made with yoghurt and cucumber, or a generous spoon of thick hummus, would complement the soft and fluffy inside of your falafels just as well. Other veggies like carrot, cabbage and cucumber are also great additions to your beautiful creation, and we simply suggest having some fun, and trying out a whole load of colourful medleys until you settle on one that suits you perfectly.
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