‘Let Me Blow Your Mind’ Falafel

I know, I know, it’s been a minute or two since I last posted a recipe. I could give you excuses and reasons, or we can jump straight into this recipe?

Okay then.

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These falafels are unbelievable. I whipped them together for the first time when I wanted to swap out chickpeas for black beans, which I love because they’re higher in protein and lower in fat. Mostly, though, it’s because they’re delicious.

They’re vegan, gluten-free, and utterly scrumptious. I HIGHLY recommend doubling this recipe so you can freeze some, because goddamn — I’m still patting myself on the back.

You will need:
Makes 18 / GF, V

  • 1 can (425g) of black beans, drained
  • 1 1/2 carrots, shredded
  • 1/3 cup chickpea flour
  • 1 diced and fried onion
  • 1 finely diced pepper
  • 1 bunch coriander (stalks and all)
  • 1 tsp (heaped) cumin powder
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp (level) turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste, I used just under 1 tsp

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If you like heat but not fire, 1 tsp of chilli powder is perfect. Adjust accordingly if you don’t — little less or little more!

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In a food processor, combine your beans, coriander (if you don’t like coriander, swap it for parsley), your onion, and your spices.

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Blend!

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In a bowl, add your paste mixture with the diced pepper (if you want to spend time to dice yours more finely, I recommend it), the shredded carrots and the chickpea flour. Get your hands in there and mix (I suggest having your hands be slightly damp).

Now, I used chickpea flour to increase protein content in these and to keep them gluten-free and lower-carb, but if you want to swap it for another flour, go ahead.

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Roll our your balls. My batch made 18 balls, the other three just didn’t fit into this tray. It’s at this point that you’ll chose whether you want to freeze them or bake them straight away. I froze most of mine, and made four for dinner that night.

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If they’re fresh, bake for 20 minutes at 180C, and if they’re frozen, at 180-200C for 25-30 minutes.

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This is how I served it up for myself, and it was divine. This bowl genuinely made me mind-numbingly happy. I love, love, love it when good, healthy food does that! You can serve yours however you like, but here I’ve got my falafels on a bed of lettuce, spinach and basil, paired with roasted sweet potato and roasted beetroot, a quarter of an avocado, and some sliced cherry tomatoes.

Please make these! There’s not a chance you’d regret it.

As always, bilafiya!
(well wishes and wellbeing)

How to Stock a Holiday Kitchen | The Italy Diaries

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I just got back from Southern Italy. I spent 12 days there, switched off from social media completely, rented a car and explored! I’ve got three vlogs coming your way, so keep an eye out for those, as well as a food haul — and this!

I stayed in an AirBnB while I was there so that I could have access to a kitchen and ensure that I still made a least some of my meals, both to save money but also to be able to control what I was eating a little more.

Here’s an entire video that I made on the groceries I picked up while I was there — in a kitchen that was utterly bare save for salt and pepper. I thought this might prove useful to anyone who is in a similar situation while travelling, or has to buy a few ingredients to tide them over in a new house.

As I mentioned in the video, I also brought a few ingredients with me from home, including some rice cakes, oats, cashew butter, raisins and a couple of other odds and ends.

As promised, here are a few of the meals I made while there — unfussy, uncomplicated meals for breakfast and lunch. I ate out most nights for dinner, or had leftovers.

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Breakfast: rice cakes, cashew butter, a banana and a double espresso

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Breakfast: porridge, milled flaxseed, cashew butter, a banana and a double espresso

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Lunch (coming up in Sunday’s vlog): couscous and roasted vegetables on a bed of spinach

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Lunch: couscous, sautéed onions and courgettes, roasted peppers and grilled paprika chicken

What was missing, and what was an unnecessary purchase:

The pearl barley was a mistake, although I didn’t realise at the time what it was (the Italian label confused me). I wish I’d gotten either risotto or regular rice. The couscous was a great idea in terms of time (obviously you just pour water on top of it and let it steam), but it’s not my favourite grain so having something to swap it out with would’ve been ideal.

The cabbage was also unnecessary, and honestly, I didn’t end up eating it. It is slightly odd, because I love snacking on cabbage (I’m weird, I know), but yes, could’ve done without that.

What I definitely needed more of, and which I mentioned in the video, was protein. I got some chicken later in the week, although I’d originally wanted fish, I couldn’t find any at the times I went looking. I also would have definitely bought another spice to cook with, preferably cumin, as for me that’s an essential and would’ve helped a lot with flavour.

There you have it! Overall it was a good shop, and I’d recommend just breaking this down to the basics like I did so you know what you’re making and how to narrow down ingredients. I’m happy to answer any questions, although I hope most of them are answered in the video, so please do give that a watch.

Arrivederci! 

Kuwait Vlog | The Best Mango Sticky Rice Ever | What I Eat #30

A couple of weeks ago I flew to Kuwait for the weekend for a change of pace, and basically just walked a lot, ate a lot and laughed a hell of a lot. I was definitely knackered by the time I was back in Bahrain, but here’s the whirlwind 48 hours for you! The food was a mixed bag, it was mostly just okay in my book, but Ubon was unbelievable. Mishari and I loved absolutely everything we ate (that Tom Ka soup had me drooling), but the mango sticky rice was out of this world. I want to fly back to Kuwait just to have that entire meal over again!

Formula 1, Enrique Iglesias & Wolfgang Puck What I Eat #29

I’ve been covering the Bahrain Grand Prix every year since 2014, so I thought it would be interesting to bring you guys along for the ride. I wanted to film on the second day because of the entertainment (Enrique!) but I was also incredibly busy so I didn’t film as much of the random acts as I would have liked!

HOWEVER, it was a packed day down at the track, followed by the gigs and a pre-race dinner at the Four Seasons with Chef Wolfgang Puck (who is a super lovely man) and his executive chefs who are in Bahrain and Doha.

Hope you enjoy this one!

Inside the Asia de Cuba Kitchen | What I Eat #28

Sometimes, when people come together and there’s kindness floating around, beautiful things can happen. I was fortunate to meet Chef Luis in a ceviche masterclass he held, and I bothered him relentlessly with questions. I’m very grateful to have had the opportunity to see how a world-class kitchen works.

Also featured: a traditional Bahraini Friday lunch, which for us is safi (rabbitfish) and experimenting with making homemade chocolates.

This was not a sponsored video, Chef Luis and Chef Pepe were just kind enough to let me in their kitchen.

As always, bilafiya
(well wishes and wellbeing)