Posted on 12 Jun 2012
The newest Just Falafel fast food restaurant in the region has opened in Oman. Just Falafel, arguably, the first and only specialised falafel outlet arrives on the scene in Oman's newest one-stop shopping destination - Muscat Grand Mall.
Hassan Jaboub, General Manager of Muscat Grand Mall said: "This innovative Middle Eastern chain food outlet pays homage to the highly popular Falafel culture. While, the true origins of popular snack Falafel is still a bit of a mystery even today, it's popularity can be gauged by its international appeal. Just Falafel is a modern take on a tradition and it takes the culinary experience into a new dimension and international experience. We are delighted that Just Falafel has commenced its business in the growing food court in Muscat Grand Mall."
Historians and culinary experts have debated in depth about the origins of falafel. Is it Greek, Indian, Arabic or Middle Eastern? Till this day no one has been able to reveal its origin. However, all common theories acknowledge that the falafel was invented several centuries ago by Ancient Egyptians, or the Copts who created this dish as a vegetarian alternative in times of fasting.
The idea behind Just Falafel as a modern fast food franchise is barely six years old. The founding partners of this set-up wanted to reflect Lebanese and Arabic culture in the region and beyond through a popular culinary medium. After careful deliberation, they narrowed down the choice of this epicurean delight to the ubiquitous falafel, which has traditionally been considered and proven as wholesome, delicious and a credible nutritional alternative, especially during fasting periods.
The innovative idea caught on in December 2007, when the first Just Falafel dedicated branded modern gourmet outlet opened in the capital of the UAE, Abu Dhabi. Now operating on the lines of a branded alternative fast food franchisee operation in the Middle East, all Just Falafel outlets offer identical branding, ambience and food quality. Food is cooked and prepared using state-of-the art machines which ensure consistency and top standards in kitchen hygiene.
However, the buck doesn't stop here. Just Falafel is also well-known innovative creations, especially its universal Falafel variants which factor in various ethnic food tastes from Mediterranean, Indian, Japanese, American, Mexican, Japanese, Italian or Emirati cultures. The franchise has also created special Falafel flavours for Omanis which is proving to be very popular with the locals and expats alike.
Said Mohammed Bitar, co-founder of the Just Falafel fast food chain: "We opened our first outlet in Abu Dhabi in 2007. We created a range of international versions of the basic falafel recipe and we are promoting this food as a healthy fast food eating option. We have successfully transformed the basic everyday falafel into a culinary experience, offering the best authentic falafel as it is served in different countries throughout the world. After the success of our three outlets in UAE, the natural progression was to bring this experience to residents of Oman."
Falafel is made from either fava beans or chickpeas.Some regions combine the two, while others use only one of these ingredients. The light and fluffy consistency is achieved by how it is prepared; instead of cooking the beans and storing them for preparation later in falafels, the beans are soaked in soda bicarbonate and then mixed with the other seasonings and ingredients. After being made into bite-sized balls, they are then fried to give it its outer crunch and served in pita bread or in sandwiches along with the varying accompaniments, which would differ depending on what traditional way it is prepared.
Source (World Franchise Associates)