By: Allyson Meyler of Reclaiming Yesterday

I try not to live with regrets, but one thing I do regret is that it took me so long to discover tahini. Seriously! I didn’t try tahini until my late twenties, and now I can’t help but imagine all of the delicious things I could have been trying in that lost time.

In case you’re late to the game like me, tahini is a paste made from toasted sesame seeds. It’s used a lot in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine, and besides being delicious it’s also full of healthy fats and amino acids.

A visit to the Earth Fare hot bar recently inspired me to make falafel, and I knew it would be the perfect vessel to drizzle with my new favorite condiment: a roasted red pepper tahini sauce.

Once you try these baked falafel with a creamy zing of red pepper, you’ll be as hooked on tahini as me!

Falafel Bowls with Roasted Red Pepper Tahini Sauce
Serves 2

Ingredients

For the Falafels
– 1 15-oz can Earth Fare Garbanzo Beans, rinsed and drained
– 1 packed cup fresh parsley, leaves and stems
– ½ cup grated carrot
– ½ cup walnuts
– ¼ cup chopped red onion
– 3 cloves garlic, chopped
– 2 tablespoons Earth Fare Tahini
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– ½ teaspoon turmeric
– 1 teaspoon cumin
– ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
– ½ teaspoon salt
– black pepper, to taste
– squeeze of lemon

For the Roasted Red Pepper Tahini Sauce
– 1 red bell pepper
– 2 tablespoons Earth Fare Tahini
– ¼ to ½ teaspoon salt
– Juice from ½ of a lemon
– Drizzle of olive oil

For the Salad
– Butterhead lettuce (or greens of choice)
– Cucumbers
– Cherry tomatoes
– Avocado
– Pineapple (optional)
– Pickled red onion (optional)

Directions
1. Set the oven to broil and place red bell pepper on a baking sheet. Turn the pepper every few minutes until all sides are blackened (about 15 minutes).
2. Remove the bell pepper and add it to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap to allow it to steam.
3. Heat the oven to 400 degrees.
4. Add all falafel ingredients except for chickpeas to a food processor and pulse until the mixture comes together but is not smooth. Add in chickpeas and continue to pulse a few more times, scraping the sides with a spatula. Don’t overmix, you want to keep the mid with some texture to it.
5. Roll the mixture into balls (around 10). Drizzle some olive oil onto a parchment lined baking sheet and roll each ball to coat in the oil. Place the balls onto the baking sheet and flatten slightly. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
6. While the falafels bake, peel away the black skin from the roasted red pepper and discard it along with the stem and seeds. Add the pepper to the food processor along with the rest of the sauce ingredients. Blend until smooth.
7. Divide salad ingredients between two bowls, add falafel and drizzle with sauce. Enjoy!

 

 


Allyson Meyler cooks, photographs, and eats the recipes found on her blog Reclaiming Yesterday. After struggling with her own health issues—and becoming frustrated with the Western medical system—Allyson took it upon herself to search for healing. She found relief through diet and lifestyle changes, and became a strong believer in food as medicine. She now shares her recipes and experiences through her blog in hopes to inspire others to get into the kitchen and take control of their health—and to eat some delicious food along the way! Follow along on Instagram and Facebook.