Pickled turnips, optional (available in Middle Eastern markets)
Tahini, (ground sesame seeds, available at local markets and Middle Eastern markets)
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*Place chickpeas in a large bowl and add cold water, enough to cover by 2 inches. Soak overnight. Drain. Alternatively, use canned drained and rinsed chickpeas.
Place the drained canned, (or uncooked) chickpeas and onions in a food processor.
Add the parsley, cilantro, salt, hot pepper, garlic, and cumin. Process until blended but not too much where they're pureed.
Sprinkle the baking powder and 4 Tablespoons of the flour into the food processor bowl and pulse. Add flour as needed, adding enough flour so that the dough can be formed into a small ball and no longer so wet or sticking to your hands.
Transfer mixture into a bowl and refrigerate, if you can, covered for several hours. Alternatively chill covered in freezer for 15 minutes.
Form the chickpea mixture into balls about the size of a walnut.
Heat 3 inches of oil to 375º in a deep pot or a wok. Fry 1 ball to test. If it falls apart, add a little more flour. When mixture consistency is ready, fry about 6 balls at a time for a few minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
Transfer to paper towels to drain.
Serve as an appetizer with the garnishes. To make a meal: Stuff half a pita with falafel balls, chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, green pepper, and pickled turnips. Drizzle with tahini thinned with water and/or hummus.
*Only if using dried chickpeas. Otherwise, just drain canned chickpeas and continue.