chickpea balls & a meditation

You most probably have noticed that I love peeling anything I get my hands on. I peel the almonds to achieve a white cookie dough look, I peel the dates to get the smoothest paste ever and recently I figure out that chickpeas can be peeled too. Why did I do that? To make the most perfect and smooth chickpea balls of course ;)

Peeling is not an easy job. It takes time and dedication, especially when you figure out it’s totally unnecessary to do it. Well, your dough will be brownish and not white, but the taste will be the same. Your balls will crunch a little when you hit the shell, but c’mon… it will happen once in a meal and you probably won’t even notice. “Then, why do you peel?” Deo asked last night, when I spend approximately 1 hour doing it…

And then it hit me. It’s my own kind of meditation. My time to leave my thoughts wonder around without a reason or just think of nothing. Do a mechanic job that requires no skills at all.
Peeling stuff.

See, cooking is a creative moment for me. I never follow a recipe, even if it’s my own :) I always improvise, change things, create. But cooking is also time to relax and enjoy the moment. So why not peel a little, let the creativity rest…

The chickpea balls here are inspired by the memory of a falafel. I used to love it. It was one of staples in my diet during the university years. Just this time I decided to let my creativity unleash itself and added something that might sounds strange, but it made them so good… I added dried & sweet melon pieces! The chickpea balls turned out delicious! Are you eager to try? :)

chickpea balls
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup dried melon
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds, optional

1. Soak the chickpeas overnight with 3 cups of water.
2. Bring them to a boil, reduce the temperature and keep boiling for 1 hour or until soft.
3. Peel the chickpeas, totally optional.
4. Blend the chickpeas using the S knife, then add the tahini and blend again until nice and smooth.
5. Add the salt and the dried melon and blend to incorporate well.
6. Make small balls with your hands and line them on a parchment paper.
7. Blend the pumpkin seeds into a powder and cover half of the balls.
8. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until crispy on the outside.
9. Serve with a salad, a falafel or just as it is :)

Макеs 25 balls.

топчета от нахут
  • 1 чаша нахут
  • 2 супени лъжици сусамов тахан
  • 1/2 чаена лъжица сол
  • 1/3 чаша сушен пъпеш
  • 1/3 чаша тиквени семки, по желание

1. Накиснете нахута за през нощта в 3 чаши вода.
2. Сложете на котлона да кипне, намалете котлона и варете около 1 час или докато нахута омекне.
3. Обелете нахута, по желание, получава се по-гладка консистенция с обелен нахут.
4. Пасирайте нахута използвайки S ножа на кухненския робот, добавете сусамовия тахан и блендирайте докато не се получи гладка и хомогенна смес.
5. Добавете солта и сушения пъпеш и блендирайте отново.
6. Направете малки топки и ги подредете върху хартия за готвене.
7. Смелете тиквените семки на брашно и оваляйте топките от нахут с него, по желание.
8. Запечете на фурна за около 10-15 минути, или докато не хванат лека коричка.
9. Поднесете с любимата си зелена салата :)

Стават 25 топчета.

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About the Author

Nadia Petrova

Nadia Petrova is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Member of CANNP, author of the Daily Raw cookbook and Green chef. You can reach her at - E-mail: nadia(at), Facebook:, Personal Facebook:, Twitter: @natureinsider. And can read more about her here - Nadia Petrova


  1. totally optional you said? ok, I don’t think I would have the patience to peel chickpeas, but I would love to try this recipe! fiuuuu, ok, I can do it! :)

  2. Another gorgeous recipe Nadia!!!! I’m not as patient as you to spend an hour peeling chickpeas! But I can certainly understand the meditative nature of it.

    I have a question about your recipe, when you call for dried melon, what type of melon did you use?

  3. These balls are a lovely idea! And now you make me think why sometimes I enjoy doing mundane kitchen tasks – it is indeed an act of meditation! I let my mind go off and instead of thinking, I am just being…

  4. Thank you Jenn! :) To tell you the truth, I have no idea what type of melon it was, but it was super sweet. I believe any other sweet dried fruit will do :)

  5. Yum, Yum & YUM!! I actually peel my chickpeas when making hummus too…I find it just makes the hummus smoother…and yes, I’m a peeler too :) These look absolutely fabulous…I love the idea of adding the melon and the pumpkin seeds! Thanks for another fabulous recipe!

  6. These balls are absolutely cute, and they sound delicious! I would never have thought of putting melon in there, but it sounds good :)
    I agree! I find cooking very relaxing! I never get when friends and family complain about having to cook! I love to just be in the kitchen , using my hands, clearing my heard and make something good and healthy to eat! Its my favorit moments of the day really!

  7. These look absolutely cute! :] Falafel is my favorite, so I’m sure these are amazing as well. I agree with you on finding cooking relaxing. I often get asked if I ever get bored of it, but it’s fun for me. I’ve gotta try the peeling technique :]

  8. Здравей, Надя

    както винаги много добри постове и рецепти:)
    Поздравления за вдъхновенията:)

    Бих искала един съвет относно пробиотиците
    тъй като ми се наложи да приемам антибиотици
    тази седмица, приемаш ли и ако да би ли
    посъветвала кои са най-качествените в момента в
    аптечната мрежа?

    Знам, че е хубаво да са български,
    благодаря предварително,


  9. Мерси Теди!
    Да, пробиотик задължително, ако си пила антибиотик. От българските ние пием Lyolact, само внимавай да се съхраняват в хладилник. Тоест, ако в магазина или аптеката не са в хладилник – не ги купувай… В къщи пак ги дръж в хладилника, защото са живи бактерии. Пий ги според указанията на опаковката :)

  10. beautiful photos and creative recipe! I also love to peel the chickpea, finding it extremely meditative. I do see a big difference, though – like you said there is a distinct smoothness, especially if you are making hummus. yes, the flavor does not change, and in a baked ball you may not see a difference either, I still enjoy the peeling! :)

  11. Thanks Samantha, I have no idea what kind of dried melon it was, there is no sign on the package and there was only this kind…
    I believe any sweet dried fruit will work here :)

  12. Wonderful recipe , I loved the pumpkin seeds cover idea !
    Just one question , you said to bake the balls for 10-15 minutes, until crispy on the outside, did you bake them at 350ºF (175ºC)?

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