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Posted on Thursday, April 28th, 2011

Dave!As anybody who follows me on Twitter is aware, I have been futilely searching for falafel here in Redneckistan. No local restaurants seem to make it. When I ask for it at the stores, few people even know what it is ("What's a floppal?") and I worry that I'm going to be put on a terrorist watch-list when I try to explain it ("Middle Eastern? LIKE IRAQ?"). A couple stores carry a falafel mix that's kinda okay, but it doesn't taste very falafely when I make it. I'd make my own falafel from scratch, but the recipe for it is huge and complex and I'm just not that smart in the kitchen. Yet.

So, basically, if you have a falafel craving in the valley here, you're kinda fucked.

Perfect Falafel Sandwich
Perfect Falafel Sandwich taken from Joy of Kosher.

Alas, as a vegetarian, I'm used to getting fucked (in a culinary sense).

Take Olive Garden, for instance. Every time I turn around, they're advertising some new special dish that could be vegetarian, but they screw it up some how. A couple weeks ago, it was Cheese-Filled Soffatelli. Yummy-looking pastries filled with cheese and herbs and junk. But the only way to get them? Served with your choice of beef or chicken...

Olive Garden Soffatelli

Of course I could always order them without the beef or chicken, but you pay the same price. I tried negotiating an extra Soffatelli instead of the beef or chicken, but "it doesn't come that way." Oh well.

And now their latest creation is Four Cheese Pastachettis. Yummy ribbons of pasta filled with cheese and herbs and junk. But the only way to get them? Served with your choice of sausage or chicken...

Olive Garden Cheese Pastachettis

I dunno. Maybe next week I'll go and try begging to see if I can get and extra Pastachetti substituted for the meat. Then prepare for the waiter to stare at me like I'm from outer space and tell me "it doesn't come that way."

Meh. Whatever.

But, you know... I'd kill for some good Indian food.

Of course, you can't get Indian food in Redneckistan either.

Guess I'll just have a salad.

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Categories: Food 2011Click To It: Permalink


  1. Jeff says:

    Do you have a Costco nearby? They have a great pre-made falafel that rivals any I have had in a restaurant. Mmmmmmm…. falafel.

  2. Mel says:

    Wait a sec, how do you get complex? Falafel is garbanzos, flour, onion, garlic, and other seasonings mashed, made into patties, and fried. Easy peasy.I assume you can at least get Goya brand garbanzos in Redneckistan, right? Try this recipe.

  3. Abigail says:

    I’m always adapting dishes (especially pasta) to vegetarian versions because it TASTES better! I’m not a vegetarian, but I do try to eat many vegetarian meals which means I’m also asking for just the pasta or just the salad or whatever. Like today at Taco Bell I got tortillas full of lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and sour cream (no meat, no beans). I never thought to ask them to give me more (they totally should!) but you’re right they’re all morons. IT DOESN’T COME THAT WAY.

  4. Brandon says:

    Just a quick search on Yelp turned up a place in Leavenworth that serves falafel – Good Mood Food. Looks pretty good too. Nothing in Wenatchee though. Hard to believe.

  5. Sarkawt says:

    My friend, you should come over here and taste the real Falafel of our market. Falafel is our most famous & cheapest fast street food in the south of IRAQ. Even in the North, where I live, they make it too but not as delicious as that of the SOUTH!Yummy! I am heading to eat Falafel NOW.

    P.S. Maybe in my next post, I am gonna talk about Falafel, and give YOU the exact easy-to-make recipe with pictures only if I get time to write 🙂

  6. B.E. Earl says:

    My sister-in-law is a great chef, and she makes an awesome falafel. Says it’s easy to make too. I’m gonna get the recipe from her and try it out, and I’ll forward you the detes.

  7. bring tequilacon to pittsburgh and get fantastic indian at the silk elephant, terrific thai at thai suan thip, vietnamese at pho kim 88 and your precious falafel at the mediterranean grill. there are several vegetarian restaurants that i haven’t tried, but if yinz bring tequilacon here i promise to try them out and find the best one before you arrive.

  8. Megan says:

    Your first mistake was going to Olive Garden. Do you have any other options? If not, try asking for a manager. That’s ridiculous.

  9. Christopher Stogdill says:

    If you ever get down to Boise I can say we have a good Indian restaurant. It’s a bit of a hole in the wall, but good.

  10. Sybil Law says:

    You should come visit me!! I can get all that shit on foot about 5 minutes away.
    (But that Olive Garden shit is ridiculous. You’d think they’d LIKE saving money and meat on a customer!)
    There’s always penne alla vodka or whatever the hell it’s called that I loooove…

  11. whitenoise says:

    I have the same problem in my own redneck town, except my drug of choice is Chicken Shawarma. Oh well. That’s what travelling is for…

  12. mike says:

    Falafel Republic has a great falafel that can be found at Costco, BJ’s Whole Foods… It is next the the hummus in the deli section.

  13. martymankins says:

    I’ve always said that if you want good italian food, stay away from Olive Garden.

    Of course, you know who has the best… Alfredo. You’ve had the pleasure of going to the Rome and NYC locations.

  14. I know I’m late (what’s new?), but I had to say that the first time I read “floppal” I laughed my ass off! Ahhhh, that was fun.

    I hope you’re feeling better soon, damnit!

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