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Lightened Up Chickpea and Mushroom Meatball Platter


I made this and Courtney B. Vance was my sous chef. Ahhh I had such fun on The Chew.

6 to 8 Servings

Prep Time: 20 mins

Cook Time: 51 mins

Total Time: 1 hr 11 mins


Chickpea and Mushroom Meatball :

1 cup canned chickpeas (drained, rinsed)

1 cup cremini mushrooms (stemmed, thinly sliced)

3 tablespoons olive oil (divided)

1 teaspoon Kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup green chiles (drained)

1 small yellow onion (peeled, roughly chopped)

2 cloves garlic (peeled)

1/2 cup parsley (roughly chopped)

1 teaspoon baking soda

olive oil cooking spray

Spiced Pita :

6 whole wheat pitas (sliced open widthwise to make a pocket)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon za’tar spice blend

flaky sea salt (to taste)

Cucumber Salad :

2 English cucumbers (small dice)

1/4 cup mint (finely chopped)

1/4 cup cilantro (finely chopped)

3 scallions (root end removed, sliced thinly on a bias)

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Tahini Sauce :

1 cup tahini

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon parsley (finely chopped)

1 tablespoon chives (finely chopped)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)



For the Chickpea and Mushroom Falafel:

Preheat the oven to 425ºF.

To a large bowl add chickpeas, mushrooms, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and toss to coat.

In a small bowl whisk together the salt, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and black pepper. Sprinkle over the chickpea mixture and toss until thoroughly coated. Remove to a baking sheet and spread into a single layer. Transfer to the oven and roast until golden brown and crispy, about 15-20 minutes. Remove and allow to cool slightly. Reduce the oven temperature to 375ºF.

Grease a baking sheet with 2 tablespoons of remaining olive oil and set aside.

Transfer roasted chickpea mixture to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Add green chiles, onion, garlic and parsley and pulse until mixture is finely chopped. Add the baking soda and pulse to combine. If mixture is too dry, add a tablespoon of water to help bind. (TK – IS WATER NECESSARY TO HELP BIND – MAY ALSO NEED A LITTLE FLOUR?).

Remove the mixture to a large bowl and using a 1 1/2-inch ice cream scoop, form chickpea mixture into balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. Spray the tops with cooking spray and transfer to the oven. Bake until golden brown and crispy, about 20-25 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a serving platter. Leave the oven on.

Spiced Pita:

Brush the tops of the pitas with olive oil and sprinkle the tops with za’tar spice and desired amount of flaky sea salt. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet, transfer to the oven, and bake until golden brown and toasted about 5-6 minutes. Remove and allow cool slightly. Slice pitas in half and add to the meatball platter.

For the Cucumber Salad:

In a large bowl, toss together the cucumber, mint, cilantro, scallions and rice wine vinegar. Season with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a serving bowl and serve alongside the falafel platter.

For the Tahini Sauce:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the tahini, lemon juice, parsley, chives and season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove to a serving bowl and serve with falafel platter.

To serve, eat all components separately or build a falafel sandwich with your desired toppings!

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