(options given…do em whichever way you like em)
Always try to use organic ingredients when possible
- 1 (15.5 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed (or avoid the BPA in the can by cooking your own)
- 1 cup chopped white mushrooms
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons soy sauce (find a soy sauce without cancer-causing caramel coloring and MSG)
- 1 ½ tablespoons of organic extra virgin olive oil, plus more for cooking
- ½ cup dry bread crumbs or use gluten free rice crumbs
- ½ cup whole wheat flour or chickpea flour for gluten free (if you use the wheat, you can call them wheatballs if that makes you feel better)
- ¼ cup of nutritional yeast (optional but consider this high protein/non-yeast source that is usually fortified with B12…a vitamin that is essential but is mostly found in animal products, so vegans should get it when they can. I use Bragg’s, but there are lots of brands out there)
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon salt (Season to taste. I found I didn’t need the salt when using the full 2 Tablespoons of soy sauce)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
If cooking the chickpeas, rinse and place in a pot covered with water. Cover and soak overnight (12 hours). Replace water with twice the volume of the chickpeas, and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover, and simmer 1 hour. Strain and allow to cool. Cooked chickpeas can be placed in 16-ounce containers and frozen for 3 months (It’s like having a can in your freezer. I do this with black beans too.)
If using canned make sure you rinse extremely well.
1-in food processor, combine chickpeas, mushrooms, garlic and parsley, and pulse until coarsely ground, but not pureed. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse to combine.
2-with a spatula, scrape the mixture into a large bowl and knead the mixture until well blended, about 2 minutes.
3-pinch off small pieces of the mixture and roll into one and a half inch balls.
4-in a large skillet, barely cover the bottom with olive oil and cook the chickballs, turning frequently to brown the on all sides, about 5 minutes.
These chickballs freeze well and can be used in any recipe that calls for meatballs. They also passed the “I’m not eating anything vegan” husband test. He gobbled them up in a flash.
Makes about 17 balls Nutrition per ball when chick pea flour, rye cracker flour, and nutritional yeast options are used ….Calories: 75, Fat: 2.5, Protein: 4.8, Iron: 4.5% RDA, Fiber: 3.5 grams Vitamin B12: 13% RDA
Using the gluten free rice crumbs vs the breadcrumbs saves calories and also saves you from the sugars, and preservatives that breadcrumbs contain. This post is not big enough to list all the ingredients in processed bread crumbs.
Using chick pea flour instead of wheat flour gives you 5 times the protein, more iron, and 3 times the fiber than using wheat flour. These small changes add up and make your healthy diet even healthier!
Nutritional yeast, while it has yeast in it’s name, is not a live yeast product. It is the shell of the dead yeast cells that contain an abundance of protein and adds a very unique flavor to anything it touches. Most nutritional yeast products are fortified with B Vitamins including B12…the one that vegans need to supplement in their diet.
From the book “100 Perks of Having Cancer plus 100 Health Tips for Surviving It (Basic Health Publications 2013) www.100PerksOfCancer.com