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Welcome to Food Feuds, where we rate similar dishes from different countries to figure out who does it better!

What is Falafel?

Falafel is a popular Middle Eastern dish made from ground chickpeas mixed with various herbs and spices, and then deep-fried or baked to create small, round patties or balls. Common ingredients in falafel include garlic, onions, coriander, cumin, and parsley. This dish was made popular by the Levant people (Lebanon, Palestine, Syria).

In recent years, falafel has transcended cultural boundaries, becoming an international sensation and leaving its mark on street food scenes from Lebanon to New York. Its popularity as a quick, flavorful, and vegetarian-friendly snack has turned it into popular and widespread dish all over the world. The versatility of falafel has allowed it to adapt to various culinary preferences, with each region adding its own unique twist to this beloved chickpea creation.

The popularity of different falafel variations can be attributed to regional preferences and cultural traditions. While chickpea-based falafel dominates in most of the world, the Egyptian-style falafel made with fava beans might not be as well-known globally. Variances in taste and texture preferences, coupled with ingredient availability, contribute to the popularity of chickpeas. The popularity of chickpea falafel could be due to the fact that many Lebanese diaspora have marketed their cuisine around the world very well.

The rise of falafel speaks to the growing awareness and appreciation for plant-based alternatives in modern age diets. With its satisfying texture and savory taste, falafel has become a staple for vegetarians.. Whether enjoyed in a pita pocket, as part of a salad, or on its own with a side of tahini sauce, falafel continues to be consumed all around the world.

What is Ta’ameya?

Egyptian-style Ta’ameya typically incorporates fava beans, along with herbs like parsley, leeks and cilantro, and spices such as cumin and coriander. The mixture is often deep-fried to achieve a crispy exterior. It’s best enjoyed with tahini sauce or tucked into a warm pita!

It is said that Ta’ameya has traces to Ancient Egypt and might be the true original falafel. Egyptians take pride in their falafel as it is a common and affordable breakfast staple.

During my visit to Egypt last year, I approached a local street vendor and offered to assist in making falafel. Using a large granite stone, akin to the size of the largest mortar and pestle, I mixed the falafel ingredients. The process resembled an ancient method, reminiscent of Ancient Egypt, showcasing a very traditional way of preparing ta’ameya.

Falafel vs Ta’ameya Food Feuds

In the latest episode of Food Feuds, we took a flavorful journey comparing Lebanese-style falafel with its Egyptian counterpart, Ta’ameya. The battle between these Middle Eastern delights revolves around their distinct textures and flavors.

One common critique of falafel, especially the Lebanese style found in fast-food joints, is its tendency to be dry and chalky. However, in this episode, we tackled this concern head-on with Sal’s homemade recipe that introduces a game-changing element—more herbs remarkably fluffy and softer interior falafel. This culinary innovation addresses a common complaint and elevates the overall dining experience.

The debate between fava beans and chickpeas adds an extra layer of complexity to the falafel experience. Some people lean towards the mild flavor of fava beans, appreciating the unique taste they bring to the table, while others swear by the consistency and familiarity of chickpeas.

Food Feuds continues to explore these culinary face-offs, providing insights that go beyond taste preferences. The episode not only offers a solution to the dryness issue but also delves into the cultural and regional nuances that make Lebanese-style falafel and Egyptian Ta’ameya standout contenders in the world of street food.

Sensory Analysis

The preference between falafel and ta’aymeya is highly subjective and I am offering my own opinion based on the recipes I made. I have tried both of these in the hearts of these countries so I have that perspective as well.


Falafel vs Ta'ameya



Winner Winner

Ta’ameya by a very small margin.

This was a hard one to choose because they were sooo close. In the future, I think it would of been better if I combined half chickpeas with half fava beans. I would of gotten a medium sized particle size and the oil and heat would be able to penetrate and cook the interior a bit. It would also be just as flavorful, fluffy and crispy.

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