When we lived in Chicago JonPaul and I had this Greek restaurant we loved, The Pita Inn (Chicago friends, don’t laugh, you know you love it too). While it may not have been a Michelin star restaurant by any stretch of the imagination, it was soo good. They made, hands down, the best falafels around. Ever since our move to the east coast we have been searching for our “Pita Inn”, but have yet to find it. So, I decided to take matters into my own hands and come up with a falafel recipe of my own. And I am happy to report that these spicy falafels are just as good, if not better, than what I was hoping for.
For me, the key to a really great falafel is all about texture. Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, with just enough of a crumble that it’s begging to be smothered in tzatziki sauce. Because let’s be honest, I’m pretty sure the only reason I really love falafels is for an excuse to have more tzatziki in my life.
I love a little heat in my falafel too, so I added sriracha and chili powder to give it a little extra zing. The subtle heat holds up really well to the cool crisp tzatziki. It was if they were made for each other.
While these spicy falafels are absolutely delicious just on their own, one of my favorite ways to enjoy them is in a pita covered with some of my favorite toppings. Here I toasted up some of our favorite pitas, added a little cucumber, and then finished it off with this tart and bright carrot and cabbage slaw to balance everything out and add a little crunch.
I love adding quick slaws to my sandwiches. They bring a tart element to the mix and add some much needed crunch. This one couldn’t be simpler. It’s just a few carrots and cabbage grated up and tossed with some red wine vinegar and parsley. It took only minutes to prepare, but took the sandwich to a whole new level.
So while I may not be able to drive over the the Pitta Inn for take out these days, my falafel game is still just as strong.