Broad Beans and Felafel

We grow broad beans in our winter garden. This year we tried a red-flowering variety, an old bean called “Crimson-Flowered” Broad Bean. The flowers are really very pretty!

These photos were taken in August, because now the big fat pods have all been harvested and the beans either eaten or prepared for storage. I helped collect the last a few days ago. Then I sat in a sheltered sunny spot to open all the pods and gather the beans. The same spot where the black snake was photographed a few days earlier! The snake was upset because she could not slip out through the gate whilst holding the large lizard in her mouth. She had to swallow it first, then make her escape from the garden.

shelling beans in the sun

shelling beans in the sun

After shelling the beans we turned most of them into felafel mix, but kept some in the fridge and some in the freezer whole. Here is the whole process:

Now you want to see us making felafel, and I forgot to capture that part … but we shaped the mix into small balls, fried them in shallow olive oil, and ate them with a tahini/lemon juice Β sauce. This is one of the really special garden treats, always best in spring, but still good during the summer when the frozen mix is thawed and cooked up!

You might enjoy this Felafel poem I found … written by a grade 7 student Alma Saddi:

“Falafel is yummy
falafels in my tummy
I’m not hungry anymore
I’ll walk out of the kitchen door
I stare…
At the light brown chair
it reminds me of… falafel
I walk into the kitchen door
Wanting more and more and more
I fill my tummy once again
i’ve eaten like a starving hen!
oh falafel u r yummy
oh falafel you’ve filled my tummy!”

-Alma Saddi, grade 7

30 thoughts on “Broad Beans and Felafel

  1. That looks really yummy. I might have to try making it. Do you think you could chop it in a blender?

    I noticed you mentioned a winter garden. What temperatures do you have during the winter and how much sun? This intrigues me.

    Love the poem too!

    • hi Deb, our mid-winter temperatures are between 5 and 20 C (40-68F), usually lovely warm sunny days, especially in our sheltered north-facing garden … yes it should work in a blender too, it is traditionally made with dried broad beans but we love it with fresh ones.

  2. Yum. I love felafel. I’ve only eaten the generic chickpea felafel, and from which I suffer if I eat too many, which I usually do, as the G.O. eats felafel only from time to time and in moderation… I never knew felafel could be made with broad beans. I think fresh broad bean felafel might even be in favour with the G.O. Another plant on the list for my one-day garden – the Crimson-Flowered” Broad Bean worth having the vege garden just for the gorgeous flowers.

  3. I have never grown broad beans but lately have come to love them. A friend introduced me to a broad bean snack you can buy here…dried and coated in a spicy mix. I was stunned when she told me they were broad beans. I am so going to try this one. Are the beans hard to grow Christine ?

    • hi Jo, no, they like cool weather, so here we plant in autumn and harvest in spring … we have only been growing them in the last ten years πŸ™‚ Felafel are often made from dried broad beans or chick peas, but are so much better made with fresh beans if you have them! Good to hear from you again … I have been absent for a while, but not as long as you!

  4. Lovely post Christine! I love felafel. Don’t remember the last time I cooked anything from my garden though…..heck, I haven’t had a garden for over two decades now πŸ˜€

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