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Old 07-01-2008, 01:59 PM   #1
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Trying to avoid another "Soy Chicken Incident" with Falafel

SO,

each year I go to the rennaisance(sp) fair in new york. I Always have the felafel there, because it is probably the best felafel Ive ever had ( so good that I actually took a picture of it and put it my photo album as a fond memory).

Anyway, Ive had felafel at many restaurants, and this tastes so much better, and the consistancy is different, Ive wondered if it is strictly made from chickpeas, or if they slipped something else in there.

So my question is, when someone orders felafel, is it ALWAYS made in a vegetarian way ( chickpeas....) or can they slip some lamb or whatever in there for a better taste and texture, and still call it felafel ??

Up until now, Ive assumed it is vegetarian, and order it every year ( and take a pic of it every year also), but im just wondering if felafel has many non vegetarian variations??

Just seems to taste too good

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Old 07-01-2008, 02:06 PM   #2
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I have never heard of a non vegetarian fallafal. That does not mean it does not exist of course, but I have always know it to be vegetarian.
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Old 07-01-2008, 02:07 PM   #3
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I think the only issue MIGHT be is if the chickpeas were made from the dried state in chicken broth versus water.
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Old 07-01-2008, 02:28 PM   #4
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"Soy Chicken Incident"


I think it's safe to assume that felafel everywhere is made without meat, unless otherwise indicated.
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Old 07-01-2008, 04:10 PM   #5
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Good, because im looking foward to my annual Ren Fair felafel this fall.
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Old 07-01-2008, 04:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
Good, because im looking foward to my annual Ren Fair felafel this fall.
If you're really worried, you might check to make sure they cook the chick peas in water or vegetable stock.

I don't know why they would use chicken stock without announcing it, but again, you never know.
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Old 07-01-2008, 05:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefJune View Post
I don't know why they would use chicken stock without announcing it, but again, you never know.
Me neither - but at this point I'd ask! Remember some cooking show contest (can't remember the show) but two contestants cooked their risotto for a vegetarian function in chicken broth - oops! It's a matter of not thinking and if the person cooking is not vegetarian, or understands that the intent is to turn out a dish that is normally suitable for same, it "could" happen.
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Old 07-01-2008, 05:34 PM   #8
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Larry, I like your ability to laugh at yourself and the situation over this :)
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Old 07-01-2008, 06:04 PM   #9
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I agree with everyone saying you should ask about it, and why not ask them their secret while you at it? Then you could make your own falafel better than every other restaurant.
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Old 07-01-2008, 07:05 PM   #10
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Falafel is made with chickpeas - chickpeas are soaked overnight in water until they puff up. You get rid of that water. Put them in a blender with little bit of water garlic and make a batter. Add herbs, salt, spices and you are all set to make the falafel.

I have actually seen it made from scratch when I was in Eygpt. There is no stock used in falafel.

I did find the soy chicken episode funny as well. Actually one thing I will say is that you can never be too sure.

I don't eat pork and I ordered a lobster stir fry once at Bob Chinns which is a very popular seafood joint in Chicago. A little while later the waitress came and informed me that they use pork stock to make it and she was asked to inform the guest that. Who would have guessed so I can understand that you can never be too careful.

During my recent visit to Spain the cheese sticks had Jamon (ham) in it. I have never seen ham in cheese sticks, it was good that we were with a bunch of collagues from work who asked me to wait before trying it so they can ensure there is no pork and viola they were right there was pork in it :-)
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