Chef's Recipes

George Calombaris: Alexandrian falafels with hummus

Australian Gourmet Traveller Cypriot recipe for Alexandrian falafels with hummus by George Calombaris.

By George Calombaris
  • 30 mins preparation
  • 1 hr cooking plus chilling
  • Serves 6
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George Calombaris: Alexandrian falafels with hummus
“My father was born in Alexandria, Egypt, hence the Middle Eastern influence in this dish. My grandmother (my dad’s mother) gave my mother this recipe and I love it.” You’ll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.


  • For deep-frying: vegetable oil
  • To serve: lemon wedges
Alexandrian falafels
  • 200 gm dried broad beans, soaked overnight in cold water, drained
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup (firmly packed) each flat-leaf parsley and coriander, coarsely chopped
  • 70 gm (¼ cup) tahini
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 200 gm dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in cold water, drained
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) lemon juice
  • 70 gm (¼ cup) tahini
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • To taste: sweet paprika
Parsley salad
  • 1½ cups (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 small Spanish onion, shaved on a mandolin
  • 100 gm mung beans
  • To serve: pansy and nasturtium leaves (optional)
  • 50 ml olive oil
  • Juice of ½ a lemon


  • 1
    For Alexandrian falafels, process ingredients in a food processor until mixture is finely chopped and forms a shape when pressed (3-4 minutes), season to taste, transfer to a bowl, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  • 2
    Meanwhile, for hummus, combine chickpeas in a large saucepan with cold water to cover, bring to the boil, cook over medium-high heat until very tender (40-45 minutes), then drain, reserving 125ml cooking liquid. Transfer chickpeas and reserved cooking liquid to a food processor, add lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, garlic and cumin, then process until smooth. Season to taste with sea salt, freshly ground pepper and paprika, then refrigerate until required.
  • 3
    Preheat vegetable oil in deep-fryer or deep-sided saucepan to 170C. Roll falafel mixture into walnut-sized patties and deep-fry in batches, turning occasionally, until golden brown (1-2 minutes; be careful, hot oil may spit). Drain on absorbent paper, season to taste and keep warm.
  • 4
    Meanwhile, for parsley salad, combine ingredients in a bowl, season to taste and toss lightly to combine. Serve falafels hot with parsley salad, hummus and lemon wedges.


This recipe is from the March 2010 issue of .

  • undefined: George Calombaris