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Celebrated chef Christine Cushing cooks up mouth-watering, exotic alternatives to hamburgers.



Making falafel from scratch is quite simple you just need the time to soak the beans. I add tons of fresh herbs for that bright green colour and fresh flavour. Frying the at 300 D is the secret to perfectly crips but fully cook falafel.

  • 11/4 cup dired slip fava beens (300ml)
  • 1 cup dried chickpeas (250ml)
  • 1 small white onion, quartered
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 small bunc, flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1 tsp. salt (5 ml)
  • 1 tsp. coriander seeds toasted, ground (5ml)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds toasted, ground (5ml)
  • freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 4cups vegetable oil, for frying (1 Litre)
Tahini Sauce Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup tahini paste (125 ml)
  • 1/2 cup water (125ml)
  • 2 to 3 tbsp. lemon juice (30 to 45 ml)
  • sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  • Olive oil to taste
Middle Eastern pita bread
sliced tomatoes
Falafel Directions:

Cover both fava beans and chickpeas with cold water in separate bowls. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours. 


Drain and rinse the fava beans and the chickpeas. Rinse thoroughly under cold water until water runs clear. Set aside. 


Add white onions, garlic and green onions to a food processor. Pulse until a mushy consistency. Add parsley and continue to pulse until mixture is fine in texture and green in colour. Transfer to large bowl.


Add the chickpeas and fava beans to the food processor.  Pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Transfer to bowl with the onion and parsley mixture. Add baking powder, cumin and coriander. Season the mix with salt, pepper and tobasco. Stir to combine. Start adding water a little at a time until mixture becomes a dough consistency. 


Place vegetable oil into a  large deep skillet  Heat oil to 300 degrees F. Mould the falafel mixture into 1½-inch diameter balls. Fry until golden brown, about 4 minutes for best texture. Remove the balls from the oil and drain on paper towel. Make 24 falafels. 


Tahini Sauce 

For tahini sauce, spoon tahini paste into a small bowl. Slowly add the lemon juice and water – as you add the liquid – the tahini paste will cease up but as you gradually add more liquid it will become smooth. Season with salt and pepper, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.


Cut pita in half to make pockets and place 3 or 4 of the falafel balls into pita pocket. Top with sliced tomatoes and tahini sauce. 

Makes 4 servings


Jerked Sockeye Salmon burger 


Spice rub:

6 sprigs fresh thyme , leaves only, chopped 

4 green onions, finely chopped

1 tsp. grated fresh ginger

juice of 1/2 lime

½  small Thai chile, chopped   

1/2 tsp. ground allspice ( 2.5 ml)

1/4 tsp. ground coriander seed 

Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste


4 pieces of salmon fillet, 1 “ thick (4 oz. each )

1 Tbsp. grapeseed oil (15 ml)


4 Buns

Tomato slices 

Leaf lettuce  


Combine all ingredients for spice blend in a small bowl until well blended.  Spread spice rub thinly onto a large plate.  Dip both sides of salmon gently into spice blend to coat.  Repeat with remaining slices.    


Heat grape seed oil on high, in a large skillet. If using a non-stick skillet for ease of lifting, cook on medium heat.  Lay fish fillets in and sear, skin side down for about 2 minutes or just until skin is starting to crisp when lifted with a spatula.  Flip and repeat on flesh side until just golden.     Remove immediately and serve in bun garnished with tomatoes and lettuce, as desired. 


Makes 4 burgers. 




Monday, July 11th, 2011