Meatballs made with eggplant? What a great idea! Serve them on a bed of zucchini noodles or with your favorite bean pasta.
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1/4 cup low sodium or no-salt-added vegetable broth, or more as needed
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 medium unpeeled eggplant, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups cooked or 1 (15 ounce) can low sodium or no-salt-added chickpeas, drained
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
- 1/4 cup unfortified nutritional yeast
- 1 cup whole wheat panko or breadcrumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- pinch red chili flakes, or to taste
- 2 cups low sodium or no-salt-added pasta sauce
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Whisk the chia seeds and water together in a small bowl and let sit for at least 10 minutes.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable broth in a medium skillet and saute the onion and garlic for five minutes or until the onion is translucent.
- Add the eggplant and continue cooking for an additional 12-15 minutes, or until eggplant is soft, stirring occasionally and adding additional vegetable broth as needed to prevent burning.
- Place the eggplant mixture in a mixing bowl and stir in the chia mixture, chickpeas and parsley.
- Place in a food processor and pulse until chopped but not pureed.
- Return to the bowl and stir in nutritional yeast, panko, oregano, basil and red chili flakes.
- Mix well, then roll into balls.
- Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, turning occasionally.
- Serve topped with pasta sauce.
Makes about 30 eggplant balls. Delicious served on top of sauteed zucchini "noodles".
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