On today’s #LunchBreakLIVE Vanessa Marsot is pioneering and Egyptian Yam Falafel. Hmmm that sounds strange. Perhaps, but it is delicious! She is on a mission to promote world veganism because it will take a vegan world to heal the planet and prevent future pandemics.
One would not normally think to make falafels from sweet potatoes! But that is what Vanessa Marsot did on her world tour this past Sunday as part of her campaign for world veganism… to stop animal exploitation, reduce climate change, and prevent world pandemics. She virtually visited Egypt, with the guiding principle of one ingredient–the sweet potato–using them with recipes from around the world.
Falafels are a staple of the Egyptian diet and are usually made from chickpeas, along with traditional seasonings of cumin and coriander. They’re already a hearty vegan meal. Vanessa found a way of making them with the sweet potato, thus increasing their flavor profile and nutrient content. The complexity of flavors had the additional sweet creaminess of the tuber, along with the freshness of greens, and the kick of the spices for a refreshing change. She also made it gluten-free with sorghum in place of bulgur wheat and rolling it in Swiss Chard in place of pita, and ground flax seed and nutritional yeast in place of breadcrumbs.
EGYPTIAN YAM FALAFEL
- INGREDIENTS FOR FALAFEL
- ½ cup sorghum
- 1 whole yam large
- 2 Tbsp coconut milk
- 1 whole garlic clove
- 3 Tbsp fresh Italian parsley
- 1 Tbsp onion powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp coriander
- 2 Tbsp chickpea flour
- 3 Tbsp flax seed
- 3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ tsp dried parsley flakes
- A head of Swiss Chard
- INGREDIENTS FOR OIL-FREE HUMMUS
- 3 cups of cooked garbanzo beans
- 1 tsp minced fresh garlic
- 1/3 cup packed chopped parsley or cilantro
- 1/8 cup water and more if needed
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Paprika optional
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Cook sorghumAdd groats with 3/4 cup of water in a pot without heat and set aside to soak.
- Meanwhile, cook yam until fork tender by steaming, microwaving or boiling. Using hand beaters or a potato masher, blend cooked yam with non-dairy milk until the consistency is like mashed potatoes and set aside.
- Return to groats, which should have absorbed some of the water. Bring the pot to a boil and once boiling reduce to low heat and simmer. Continue to cook, uncovered, until all the water is gone, stirring frequently to prevent burning.
- Toss garlic, parsley, onion powder, cumin, coriander, chickpea flour, flax seed, and salt in a food processor. Blend until it's very crumbly and spice-like. Mix spice mixture with yam mixture until well combined. Then add in cooked groats.
- Drop tablespoon-sized portions on to the cookie sheet. Lightly cover with foil and bake 20 minutes. Flip the balls, and then bake another 20 minutes, or until the outsides are crispy.
- While the falafels are baking, make the hummus by placing all the ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. The consistency should be a thick sauce. You may need to slowly add more water, if needed, for desired consistency. You may top with paprika if desired.
- Stuff Swiss Chard leaves or pitas with falafel balls, chopped lettuce and the hummus.