vegetable oil to shallow-fry
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 x 400g/14oz cans chickpeas (garbanzos), drained and rinsed
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp dried chilli flakes
a small handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
75g/3oz/½ cup ready-to-eat dried apricots, finely chopped
1 large egg, lightly beaten
100g/3½oz/1 cup plain (all-purpose) flour
salt and ground black pepper
toasted pitta breads, hummus and salad to serve
For the mint and yogurt sauce
125g/4oz/½ cup natural yogurt
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
finely grated zest of ½ lemon
1 Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large deep pan, add the onion and cook gently over a low heat for 10 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
2 Tip into a food processor with the chickpeas, cumin, chilli, parsley and seasoning. Blitz until fairly well combined but the mixture still retains some texture.
3 Transfer to a bowl and stir in the apricots, egg and flour.
4 Pour enough oil into a pan so that it comes 3cm/1¼in up the sides and set over a mediumhigh heat. Drop small spoonfuls of the chickpea mixture into the hot oil – it should sizzle. Turn the falafels when they are golden brown on one side and cook until golden on the other side.
5 Use a slotted spoon to lift the falafels out of the oil on to kitchen paper.
6 Meanwhile, make the sauce: stir all the ingredients together in a bowl and season to taste.
7 Serve the falafels drizzled with the sauce, with toasted pittas, hummus and salad.