It’s no secret that I’ve been trying to eat less meat this year. I’ve found it easier than I expected honestly, but I’m always on the look out for quick and easy veggie meals that are packed full of flavor. That’s exactly what you’ll get from these chickpea patties.
The alternate name for chickpea patties is Falafel on Steroids. But really they don’t taste that much like falafel other than the fact that they are made from chickpeas (Garbanzo beans depending on where you’re from).
Served with a simple salad, these are a great dinner.
There are two parts to this meal that make it special. First, the garam masala. It’s fantastic and I doubled it for my version over the original recipe. Second, the greek yogurt sauce is very good. One of the better versions I’ve had.
Also, this looks like a decent list of ingredients, but there’s a lot of duplicates actually so it’s really easy to prep if you do everything at once.
1) For the yogurt sauce, seed your cucumber and then grate it through a box grater into a colander. Add a sprinkle of salt and let the cucumber sit for 10-15 minutes.
2) Dice other yogurt sauce ingredients and combine with cucumber. You could make this in advance.
3) For patties, toast breadcrumbs in a dry pan for five minutes until they are lightly toasted.
4) Whisk together eggs, garam masala, oil, and a pinch of salt.
5) Add your drained chickpeas to a large bowl and mash them with a fork or masher. You could also pulse them lightly in a food processor.
6) Stir the egg mixture and breadcrumbs into the chickpeas and mix well. Also stir in other ingredients (yogurt, scallions, cilantro).
7) Form eight even sized patties with the chickpea mixture.
8) Cook patties in a pan with a drizzle of oil over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes per side. They should be nicely browned on each side.
9) Serve the patties with the yogurt sauce.
Adapted from America's Test Kitchen 30 Minutes Suppers.
Making the Tzatziki
The next time I make this, I’m going to make a double batch of the sauce. It would be so good on pita as a snack or on a ton of different sandwiches. In all seriousness, I could eat it with a spoon.
The only hard part (and it isn’t that hard people) of making this particular tzatziki recipe is shredding the cucumber. Sometimes I like it chunkier, but shredded was nice for this version. Basically, just peel your cucumber and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Then shred it into a colander using the large holes of a grater.
Sprinkle a pinch of salt on the shredded cucumber and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. It’ll lose some moisture so you may want to set it over a bowl or a few paper towels.
Once your cucumber is ready, just mix up the rest of your tzatziki ingredients in a big bowl. It should be pretty thick. Take your time chopping your ingredients evenly so you don’t get a big bite of scallion or something.
This will keep fine in your fridge for a day or two or probably longer but it won’t last that long.
Making the patties
These patties are pretty easy to make and while the original recipe only makes 6 patties, I was easily able to get 8 good sized ones from the recipe.
To start, I added my breadcrumbs to a dry pan and toasted them over medium heat for about 5 minutes. You want them a light brown color, but definitely not burned. They should look something like this:
That’ll give them a slightly nutty flavor and also help them absorb even more moisture.
Next, whisk together your eggs, garam masala, oil, and pinch of salt into a small bowl. It’ll look strange, but smell really good.
Add all your drained and rinsed chickpeas into a large bowl and mush them up with either a fork or a potato masher. I used a fork and left mine pretty chunky actually. You could make it smoother if you wanted, but I’m lazy.
Then stir in your egg/spice mixture, breadcrumbs, and all the other ingredients. You’ll end up with this very thick paste of sorts. Again, it doesn’t look great, but it’ll smell really good and trust me it’ll taste good also.
Making and Cooking the Patties
Forming the patties is straightforward enough. Just divide the mixture into 8 (or 6) equal parts and then form round patties out of the mixture about 3/4 of an inch thick. Try not to press the mixture together too much. Keep it light.
Then, in a pan over high heat, add 2 Tablespoons of olive oil and when it’s glistening, add your patties. You’ll probably have to work in two batches unless you have a really big pan.
Four to five minutes per side and you should end up with these lovely, browned patties.
I served mine with a small salad and a good amount of the yogurt sauce. Very tasty!
As soon as I took a bite of this though, the first thing I thought of was veggie burgers. These would just rock as burgers. The burger route opens up a lot of options. Have the patties with a salad for dinner and then take one or two burgers for lunch the next day!
These are versatile and delicious little things. I didn’t miss the meat for a second when I was done eating them!