Monday, February 25, 2008

Arusuvai Friendship Chain - Star Anise - Part 2

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Moving on to the second part of my three part special dedicated to the star spice - star anise and Arusuvai (actually, I'm prolonging till the secret spice reaches Jayasree :D), this time I had decided to try out something different and while searching for ideas, I stumbled upon a recipe for a recipe of Hummus with ginger-garlic. Hummus as most of us will be knowing is an integral part of mid-east cuisine. It is a dip made of chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice & garlic and is eaten with pita bread, falafel and even crackers. It can also be served with carrot or celery sticks and is a great appetizer. It is also something my wife loves. One of the reasons, we frequent the Mediterranean restaurant in the city too often. It was easy to make and believe you me it took lesser time to disappear. My son who runs away on the mere mention of the word food, relished it and it actually turned out to be the only thing he ate for his meal. Star Anise added a wonderful flavor to the otherwise pungent and spicy concoction. Falafel can traditionally be made in two ways. One, the way it is still made by the Egyptians, using Fava Beans, Chickpeas and Bulgur or the way it is made in Israel, using chickpeas alone. Since, some of the ingredients are a pain to find in the local supermarket, I decided to do it the Israeli way...make it with chickpeas alone.

Cilantro Falafel with Star Anise Flavored Soy Garlic Hummus

Cilantro Falafel


Chickpeas, soaked overnight and drained - 1 Cup
Cilantro ( Corriander ), Chopped - 3 Tblsp
Onion, roughly chopped - 1
Dried Red Chilly - 2 No.
Cumin, powdered - 1 Tsp
Garlic Cloves - 2-3
Baking Powder - 1 Tsp
Refined Flour - 4 Tblsp
Salt - To Taste
Oil for frying - 20 Ml.

1. Place the drained chickpeas and the onions in a food processor. Add the Cilantro, salt, red chillies, garlic, and cumin. Process until coarse mix is formed.
2. Add the baking powder and 4 tablespoons of the flour, and mix.Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
3. Form the chickpea mixture into balls about the size of walnuts, flatten to form a patty.
4. Heat Oil in a pan and shallow fry till they turn golden brown.
5. Drain on paper towels to take out excess oil. Serve hot with Tahini or Hummus.

Note: Take more flour to ensure the mixture does not stick to your hands.
Traditionally the falafel may not be turned into patties and just fried as balls.

Star Anise Flavored Soy Garlic Hummus


4 garlic cloves, peeled
1 Cup chickpeas soaked overnight in water, drained, liquid reserved
20 gm White Sesame seeds powdered
3 tblsp unseasoned vinegar
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp red chili sauce
1/2 tsp freshly ground star anise
2 Tsp chopped fresh cilantro
1 white onion, made into a paste
1 Tsp Worcestershire Sauce


1. Mince garlic in a processor.
2. Add Chickpeas, reserved liquid, sesame seeds, vinegar, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, chilli sauce and ground anise. Process to coarse puree.
3. Add Cilantro and onion. Combine.
4. Serve garnished with whole star anise and a sprig of cilantro.

To Be Continued ...


Mansi Desai said...

Looks aromatic and tasty!

Pooja V said...

My fav non-desi street food cooked at home. I have a post on this too, but yours looks v good.

Srivalli said...

Gaurav..thats a nice and innovative dish..looks great..its fun to see you posting a series on this...very nice indeed!

DK said...

That must have smelled 'HEAVENLY'! Bookmarked

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