In Algerian cuisine sfriya are a category of round, football (oval shapped with tapered ends) or patty shaped croquettes, dumplings or rissoles that are steamed, boiled or deep or shallow fried. The word sfriya is derived from the Medieval Arabic Isfîriyâ.
They can be based on a variety of starches such as potatoes, flour, bread or legumes. Potato or semolina flour based one are probably the most common (potato croquettes are also called maqouda, meaning "the pounded"). In sub-Saharan Algeria sfriyas are made with black eyed peas and are similar to West African akara.
A Recipe of Isfîriyâ
Take some red meat and pound as before. Put it in some water and add some sour dough dissolved with as much egg as the meat will take, and salt, pepper, saffron, cumin, and coriander seed, and knead it all together. Then put a pan with fresh oil on the fire, and when the oil has boiled, add a spoon of isfîriya and pour it in the frying pan carefully so that it forms thin cakes. Then make a sauce for it.
Break however many eggs you like into a big plate and add some sourdough, dissolved with a commensurate number of eggs, and also pepper, coriander, saffron, cumin, and cinnamon. Beat it all together, then put it in a frying pan with oil over a moderate fire and make thin cakes out of it, as before.
Counterfeit (Vegetarian) Isfîriyâ of Garbanzos
Pound some garbanzos, take out the skins and grind them into flour. And take some of the flour and put into a bowl with a bit of sourdough and some egg, and beat with spices until it's all mixed. Fry it as before in thin cakes, and make a sauce for them.
The last one looks like a simple falafel to me. Chick pea or fava bean based rissoles are made in Algeria but they differ from Middle Eastern style falafels. Falafels are more of a restaurant item in Algeria and definitely considered Middle Eastern in origin.