Linguine with beetballs

I’ve been seeing vegetarian meatballs on Pinterest and the web for quite some time, and have become rather intrigued by the concept. Being a long term veggie who never really liked meat in the first place, I’ve never eaten a traditional meatball and the whole idea seems rather bizarre to me. However, these little bites were a real success –  that sweet/savoury combination giving quite deep, complex flavour, and only a bit beetroot ‘earthy’, all complimenting pasta and tomato sauce surprisingly well.

They could work in a number of ways – here on pasta, or as a sausage alternative, even in sandwiches. Give them a go – I was very surprised, and they got a huge thumbs up from my omnivorous partner too. Not bad for a recipe that largely, I made up as I went along, using what I had in the fridge.

Beetballs (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

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makes 12, serves 4

  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cooked beetroots, roughly chopped (fine if marinated in vinegar)
  • 4 mushroom, chopped
  • 2 tbsps nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 slices of bread, blitzed to breadcrumbs (half kept aside)
  • 1/2 tsp salt or 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp cornflour

- Pulse the onion, beetroot and mushrooms in a food processor until well chopped

- add the other ingredients and pulse until well combined

- taste and adjust the flavours as necessary

- let sit in a fridge for at least 1/2 an hour

- pour the remaining half of the breadcrumbs into a shallow bowl.

- roll the mix into 12 even sized balls. rolling each in the breadcrumbs to finish.

- chill to firm up

- Fry in a small amount of sunflower oil until golden all over. Set aside.

- whilst cooking the pasta and your regular tomato sauce, reheat the balls in a medium oven to heat through.

- Serve on top of the pasta and tomato sauce, drizzled with a little extra sauce

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4 thoughts on “Linguine with beetballs

  1. Yum – they look nice and moist will have to make. we make mushroom burgers (nothing like these!) with mushrooms, herbs, spelt bread all blizted plus other things, then flatten and bake. Will definitely try and report back. we’ve got beetroot ready to go in the garden :)

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