Recently, I have have converted to a some-what plant-based lifestyle (aka vegan). A wonderful diet of lean proteins (beans and fish), and macronutrients with complex grains and, still, no processed foods.
I was craving some meatballs one day and I decided to get inspired from another recipe and make it my own. I came across this recipe on pinterest and added my own flare to them. Instead of the quinoa, I used chickpeas for a protein boost. I also used fresh herbs for a nutrient and flavor boost.
But why plant-based? Well, about three months ago I saw a couple documentaries on Netflix called Forks Over Knives and Cowspiracy. Forks Over Knives is a documentary about the plant-based diet and people who had diseases, such diabetes and heart disease, and reversed it by changing their animal-protein diets to plant-protein diets. The results were obvious, just by changing their diet they became more lively, lowered their risk of chronic diseases involving the arteries, and increased their life span. But, you just have to see for yourself and watch this moving documentary.
In Cowspiracy, it’s about the livestock industry and how it impacts Earth, through the production of greenhouse gases. THIS LINK is all the facts about the livestock industry and how it effects our Earth.
So back to the “meat”balls… These little balls of wholesome goodness contain quality protein along with veggies and delicious herbs and spices. These healthy, vegan, and gluten free balls are also universal; I put them over rice with a curry sauce, on a sandwich, and alone with tomato sauce!
Vegan, Gluten Free
Makes about 12 balls
-1 head of cauliflower
-1 15oz can of chickpeas
-1/3 cup gluten free panko bread crumbs
-1 tbsp olive oil
-1 tsp each of fresh chopped thyme, oregano, rosemary, and sage
-1 1/2 tsp fresh, chopped parsley (and a little extra for garnish)
-1/2 tsp turmeric
-1/2 tsp red pepper
-pinch of salt and pepper
For the quick and easy sauce
-1 14oz can diced tomatoes
-2 cloves garlic, finely diced
-1/2 medium onion chopped
-1/2 tbsp Italian seasoning
-1/2 tsp red pepper
- Chop the cauliflower and steam in a sauce pan, 1/4 filled with water until tender, about 12 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and prepare your baking sheet by lining with aluminum foil and drizzling the 1/2 tbsp of olive oil on the pan.
- Put the steamed cauliflower and the rest of the ingredients, EXCEPT THE BREAD CRUMBS, into the food processor and pulse away!
- Once all pulsed together, in a separate bowl folder the bread crumbs into the mixture.
- Roll about 2 tbsp of the mixture into a ball and set onto the pan. Bake and turn generously until they are brown on all sides and firm to the touch, about 20 minutes.
- As the balls bake, add all sauce ingredients to a sauce pan and simmer until the onions become translucent.
- Serve the balls alone topped with sauce or any way you you please. Enjoy!