Falafel and Quinoa Tabbouleh

I didn’t post this yesterday afternoon because I decided to take advantage of the advance polls here. For those of you outside of Alberta, there’s an election going on and I FINALLY GET TO VOTE! The Hubs and I are new citizens and we finally get to vote and have a say in how our tax money is spent. The voting process is different from what I’m used to.

Back home, you have a voters registration card. On voting day, you show that and your photo ID and wait in a LONG line to vote. Then you go to a booth and punch holes with a pin next to the candidate you want to vote for. Some booths have a curtain so it’s almost like you’re in a dressing room or something. You’ll have different choices of candidates from all different parties, you’ll get to vote for local offices, state offices, laws, and even the local sheriff. For instance, when it’s a Presidential election, you’ll vote for President, your congressman/woman (if it’s that time), representative (if it’s that time), maybe state Governor, Mayor, Coroner, Sheriff, and different laws. Whoever is running for whatever party will be on the ballot. Then you take your ballot and stuff it in box. Then I’m assuming a machine will tally up the votes just like when you’re in school taking those tests where you darken a circle with a No. 2 pencil.

However, when I went yesterday I had to register first off because I’m a new citizen. I had to sign a form stating I am who I claim to be. Then the woman found what district/riding I’m supposed to vote for by finding my address on a map. There are different candidates for different districts/ridings. She directed me over to a man who handed me a paper ballot. He first tore something off with numbers on it. I then went over to a desk with something like cardboard to shield my ballot from other onlookers (the room was dead by the way). Then I took a pencil and put an X by my chosen candidate, folded the piece of paper and put it in a box that was in front of that man.

There were only four candidates on the ballot and they weren’t the people who were running to the Premiere of Alberta (which is basically like a Governor). It’s odd because I’m not used to the way elections are done here. I thought we’d get to vote for the Premiere and other positions. Not so. You vote for your candidate in your district and when they tally up the votes and see who won, that party (TOTALLY different political parties here too) wins that district/riding. Then, if I remember right, whichever party gets the most votes for the province of Alberta, their candidate wins the position as Premiere. It’s a bit odd and WAY different from the way we vote in the States, but that’s just how things are done here. The official voting day is May 5, so we’ll see who comes out on top. I won’t tell you who I voted for just yet. ;o)

But on to the recipe!!!

I picked out this recipe from the Deliciously Ella cookbook. The Hubs came home early in the afternoon, so I went to vote as soon as the little one went down for a nap and then went for a 6 mile run. I got back just in time to start supper. The falafels were REALLY easy to make. You put everything in a food processor so everything can mix.

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She says to roll them into balls with your hands and you should come out with 12 balls. I didn’t feel like doing that so I used an ice cream scoop and ended up with 16 balls. I wasn’t complaining with the extra balls because they’re good.

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You put them in the fridge for 30 minutes to set and then bake them for 45 minutes. When I put them in the fridge, I got to work on the Tabbouleh.

Tabbouleh is a Middle Eastern dish typically made with couscous or bulgur and tomatoes along with some herbs. As she states in her book, “Sadly, bulgur wheat isn’t gluten free, so I like to use quinoa instead.”

I rinsed my quinoa until the water was clear and put it on the stove. A side note: you can tell the difference in smell if you don’t wash the quinoa. When it starts to boil you’ll smell a slightly bitter smell coming from the quinoa. If you rinse it before cooking, that smell won’t be there. It’ll just be a slight nutty scent. I just realized that a little while ago when I was too lazy to rinse the quinoa.

When your falafels are set, you’re supposed to coat them in some flour but I totally forgot about that part. I just put them straight into the oven and went to go take a shower. The Hubs finished off the Tabbouleh while I was in the shower.

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To serve, I just spooned some of the Tabbouleh into bowls and put a few falafels on top. Voila!

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The dish was good and is definitely filled with loads of protein. This is a shot of my dish because you can see the salt I put on it. I thought this dish was going to be labor intensive but wasn’t. The food processor does everything for you. The little one liked his dish, the Hubs went back for seconds, and I had some for lunch today. I’d definitely make this again but I think I’ll serve it with some yogurt for the Hubs and little one. If you’re not wheat or gluten free, the falafels would be good in a wrap or sandwich.

Tonight we’re just having something simple. I’m going to a speaking event to hear Gill Deacon, the author of There’s Lead In Your Lipstick, speak. The event is being put on by Rocky Mountain Soap Co, which is an Alberta company that makes soaps and all kinds of good smelly stuff out of natural ingredients. They’re based out of Canmore, and I LOVE their stuff.

Enjoy your Friday everyone!

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