Edible Insect Recipes: Falafel and Curry Yogurt Sauce
March 22, 2020
May contain affiliate links.
Falafel gets an undeserved reputation as a kind of Mediterranean junk food—the chicken nuggets of the middle east. In fact, I've heard that the McDonald's in Egypt serves the "McFalafel," essentially a vegetarian Big Mac. But it doesn't need to be this way—all you have to do to cut the fat and turn falafel into low-fat, high-protein, snack, is bake in an oven instead of a frying in oil. Falafel is always high in protein, but this particular falafel recipe offers more vitamins than usual, thanks to the cricket powder; in particular, I used cricket powder from Entomo Farms, and cricket salt. Make it along with the tangy spiced yogurt sauce, and you'll have yourself a healthy snack, packed with flavor.
Total: 1 hr; Serves 4
SPICED YOGURT SAUCE
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 2 tablespoons hot water
- 1 large clove garlic, crushed
- Juice of 2 lemons (approximately 1 tablespoon)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 6 oz (170 grams) greek yogurt
- Salt, to taste
- Pepper, to taste
- 1 green onion, thinly sliced
- 1 cup (15 ounce) dried chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1/2 large onion, chopped (1 cup)
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cricket salt
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika, or your favorite chili powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3 tablespoons cricket powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
- 3-4 tablespoons chickpea flour, or all-purpose flour
- Falafel scoop (optional)
1. Place the cumin and turmeric in a small bowl or glass jar. Add the hot water, stir, and let sit for three minutes. Add the garlic, lemon juice, honey, yogurt, and salt, and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper and whisk well, or close lid and shake well, if in a jar. Cover and let sit in fridge for the flavors to come together; preferably 2 hours, but if it only sits for the time it takes you to make the falafel, that's okay.
2. Combine most dry ingredients (cricket salt, cumin, paprika/chili, or your favorite chili powder, baking powder, tablespoons cricket powder, salt, pepper) in a bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.
3. Put chickpeas, parsley, cilantro, onion, garlic, and dry ingredients in a food processor and pulse until texture is thick and mealy, stopping periodically to scrape the sides. When mixture is blended, transfer to a large bowl and start to add and mix the chickpea flour, one tablespoon at a time, until mixture starts to resemble a sticky dough. Cover, and refrigerate for half an hour.
4. Preheat oven to 425°F/220°C. Line baking sheet with parchment paper, or lightly grease the pan with olive oil or cooking spray. Form small balls with a large spoon, or a falafel scoop, and bake for 20-35 minutes, flipping and turning halfway, and watching to make sure they don't burn. Serve with spiced yogurt sauce, and enjoy.
NOTE: Falafel and spiced yogurt sauce can be stored separately up to 4 days in the fridge.
This entomophagy recipe is included in Bugs for Beginners, a cookbook which teaches Westerners how to prepare edible insects and safely eat a bug. Text may include affiliate links
I'm Mic. I love reading about, writing about, thinking about, photographing, and especially eating, food. Especially bug food. Enough talk, let's eat!