Chef and food writer, Jane Baxter, has this week announced her belief that our very own city of Alexandria is home to the tastiest falafels in the world. A rather sweeping statement, yes, but one that we all know rings very true.
In a piece for British newspaper, the Guardian, Baxter credits culinary anthropologist, Claudia Roden, for the find, with Roden pointing to the fact that the use if fava bean makes for a much lighter bite than the versions by our Middle Easteren neighbors. So taken was Baxter by Alexandrian taameya during a recent visit, in fact, that she sought the recipe and has shared it with her readers – see below.
Naturally, the news has been celebrated by Egyptians – a people whose love for food is possibly only matched for their love of koshary and loitering at cafes.
With the country’s tourism still not what it once was, food tourism could well be something to capitalise on. It sounds crazy, yes, but crazy enough that it might work. A little.
Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus overnight soaking
Cooking time: 5-8 minutes
250g dried split fava beans, covered in cold water and soaked overnight
3 garlic cloves, crushed
½ leek, finely chopped
5 spring onions, finely chopped
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp gram flour
1 tbsp chopped coriander
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tsp ground cumin
A pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt and black pepper
Oil, for frying (rapeseed, rice bran or sunflower)