Garbanzo beans never tasted so good! I love hummus, or just the raw beans in salads, as much as the next person, but my favorite legume is back at it in these fritters. What I love about this meal is that it can take on many different personalities.
If you’re just testing out Meatless Monday, this is a great intro. If you’re looking for an at-home version of falafel or Mediterranean food, top the fritters with tahini, tomatoes, and cucumbers. Greek yogurt works as a great alternative to a cream sauce, except it’s lower in sugar and higher in protein!
The meal starts with chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans), which are rich in folate, or vitamin B9, a key nutrient for proper red blood cell development. Folate also helps bread down homocysteine, a protein linked to cardiovascular disease. So don’t hold back on these super easy, nutrient packed power patties!
This is the perfect dish to get the whole family involved. Adults can handle the slicing and dicing the shallots and fennel, but mashing and molding the fritters? Leave that to the kids! Help them learn to love cooking and let them feel helpful as they assist you in combining all of the ingredients and forming the fritters into balls. (Bonus points for using your hands. The messier the better!)
The recipe calls for arugula salad, but it works with any greens you love! I just recently found the biggest, most beautiful bunch of rainbow chard at the farmers market and I couldn’t resist. As long as it’s deveined, the chard works great in this dish. Make sure to use a food processor to really blend up the leaves.
1 Tbsp. + 2 tsp. shallots, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice + lemon zest
1 Tbsp. oil, safflower or sunflower recommended
1 Tbsp. + 1/2 tsp. fresh oregano, divided
1 tsp. raw honey
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1 15-oz can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
1 large egg, whisked
1/2 cup whole-wheat bread crumbs*
4 cups baby arugula
1/2 small fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced
*use almond flour for gluten-free option
1. In a sealed jar, shake together shallot, lemon juice, 2 tsp. water, 2 tsp. oil, 2 tsp. oregano, honey, and 1/8 tsp. salt. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, mash chickpeas, egg, bread crumbs, remaining oregano and lemon zest. If you are adding greens into the fritters, use a food processor to blend all ingredients together.
3. Stir in cheese. Mix well and shape into a large ball. Divide ball into four patties, flattening each into 1/2″ thickness.
5. In a medium nonstick skilled, heat remaining 1/2 tsp. oil on medium, add patties and cook until both sides are lightly golden and cooked through. About 4 minutes per side.
6. In a medium bowl, toss together arugula and fennel, then pour dressing over top and toss.
7. Divide salad and fritters among plates and enjoy!
ALSO TRY THIS:
recipe by Katie McGrath; photos by Kacy Meinecke for DietsInReview.com