Toasted pine nut and mint felafels with hummus and pickled beetroot

I am not going to lie, my favourite component of this recipe is the beetroot pickle. Not because it's better than the other components, and not because it's the most flavourful. Just because I had always assumed pickled beetroot was beyond my means, something that I would inevitably have to buy in a can. I LOVE pickled beetroot. Just to clarify: yes, I am a pleb. 


Having said all that, the other parts of the recipe are good as well! (I swear!) Taking inspiration from Green Kitchen Stories for the Felafel, and consulting 'the world's expert on hummus' (via Google, naturally) it seems a bit hard to go wrong. 



You'll need:
2 large Beetroots
1 cup of apple cider vinegar
1 cup of the liquid the beetroot was cooked in
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 medium jar, sterilized

1. Peel your beetroots and pop them in a medium pan filled with water. Cook them on a medium heat until they are tinder (around 15 minutes)
2. Drain the beetroots (retaining 1 cup of the liquid) and add the remaining ingredients to the pan. Cook for around 5-10 minutes and then add to your sterilised jars!

A note on sterilizing: after smashing a glass jar trying to sterilize it in the microwave, I have come to view the oven as the longer but better option. I popped my freshly washed jars in the oven, upside up, on a tray, for around 20 minutes. And I seem to be ok. 



80-100g toasted pine nuts
3 cloves of garlic
1 can of chickpeas, drained
3 tablespoons cumin
big handful of mint
handful of spinach
small piece of preserved lemon (worth the investment and its not even expensive!)
4 tablespoons of buckwheat flour
1 egg
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper

1. Preheat your oven to 180 Celsius, and then pop all the ingredients in your food processor, and keep it going until a goopy paste has formed (yum) 
2. Roll the mixture into balls, adding more buckwheat flour if it is too goopy. Pop the balls in the oven (no need to oil the tray, baking paper is A ok.. Unintentional rhyming means its time to eat lunch) 
3. Cook the felafel for around 15-20 minutes, or until they are lovely and brown.



1 cup toasted sesame seeds
1 can of chickpeas, rinsed
4 decent sized cloves of garlic
3/4 cup olive oil
juice of 1 1/2 lemons

1. Making this hummus is a test of patience in the absence of a good food processor. Even with a Thermomix. Pop it all in the processor and intermittently pause to scrape down the sides. Be patient, grasshopper (I don't even know what I'm quoting here?) It will get there. 

Assemble all yo components on a plate with some salad items (cucumber and carrot are a good place to start) and perhaps some minty yoghurt, just for kicks.