Meatless Balls + Pasta Sauce
I’m going to make a big call and claim that everyone loves Spaghetti & Meat Balls or Spaghetti Bolognese.
It’s a classic dish full of rich flavours. Even better paired with some fresh sourdough bread it’s actually, hands down my favourite winter comfort meal.
This dish would have to be one of the easiest meat meals to convert to Vegan. What makes this one of my favourite Vegan meals is by removing the meat and using a gluten free pasta it’s actually a very light meal. That is if you don’t slop it up with half a loaf of bread.
You can add pretty much add any veggie to it. Green beans, mushrooms and even fresh corn.
Homemade pasta sauce is one of my favourite things to make.
It’s extremely easy. There’s no added sugars or overload of salt, and honestly nothing compares to the taste. It’s loaded with ripe tomatoes and fragrant fresh herbs. It blows my mind every time.
½ cup Cashews
1 ½ cup cooked Rice
¼ cup Toasted Sesame Seeds
3 Tbsp. Tamari (or soy sauce)
2 Tbsp. Nutritional Yeast
2 tsp. smoked Paprika
3 tsp. Dried Basil
Place baking paper on to your cooking tray, and then set aside.
Crumble tofu into a bowl, adding the cashews.
Mix in the remaining ingredients except the rice. Leave to marinade for about 5 to 10minutes.
Mix in your rice. Now you’re going to be rolling the mixture out into balls, so it’s easiest to mix the rice in with you hands. You will need to really squish it together so that it’s all mixed in evenly.
Grab small handfuls about the size of a scooped tablespoon; squish them into balls and place onto your tray.
Place balls into the fridge to cool. I usually leave them for a few hours. But you can leave them in there while you whip up your sauce.
(You can also make these the night before and leave them in the fridge for the next day)
Once your sauce is close to being ready.
Heat oven at 200 degrees and cook the Meatless Balls for 30minutes, until they are crunchy on the outside.
8 Truss Tomatoes (if you don’t have fresh tomatoes a jar of Passata or 2 tins of tomatoes are fine)
2 Red Capsicums (Bell Pepper)
2 Tbsp. Tomato Paste
1 Large Onion
Fresh Rosemary Sprigs
2 Garlic Cloves
4-5 Bay leaves
½ cup fresh parsley
Veggie Stock (1 cube + I/2 cup water or 1/2 cup of liquid stock)
½ tsp. chilli flakes
1 cup fresh Basil leaves
Pepper to taste
Oil for cooking - Optional
Heat oil in a pan, add Rosemary, bay leaves and garlic. Leave to fry for a minute on a medium heat so it doesn’t burn.
Add in the tomatoes (Whole), Capsicum (chopped, but chunky) and onion (roughly chopped) and cook for about 5minutes. Add remaining herbs and spices.
Add stock and cover. You will need to leave it to simmer away for about 10minutes.
Remove Bay leaves.
Now it depends on how you like your sauce, Chucky or smooth.
If you like it super chunky, using a potato masher, mash the tomatoes until all the sauce is crushed together. Alternatively you can put it in a blender and pulse it a few times.
If you like it smooth, you will need to put the sauce in a blender and starting on low blend for a few minutes, then upping the spend to medium for a few more minutes.
I like to pour the sauce back into the pan and bring it to a simmer with the lid off. I leave it to simmer for 25-30minutes.
Add more fresh basil for a more intense flavour.
Place the Meatless Balls into the sauce and then your ready to serve.
Garnish with some cherry tomatoes or basil leaves.
Pair it with some spaghetti.
Optional Sides -
Homemade sourdough rubbed with garlic or some garden greens.
This will serve 4 adults