A Middle Eastern specialty consisting of small, deep-fried croquettes or balls made of highly spiced, ground chickpeas. They're generally tucked inside pita bread, sandwich-style, but can also be served as appetizers. A yogurt- or tahini-based sauce is often served with falafel.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.