You can’t beat a good bowl of chunky veg and tomato sauce poured over a bowl of pasta for a satisfying and quick comfort meal. To add some extra texture and protein I like adding these meatless balls which bind together perfectly with whizzed up quinoa.
200g frozen soya mince
200g quinoa, soaked for 24 hours
100g fresh breadcrumbs 90g
1 red onion
1 tbsp marmite
2 tbsp rapeseed oil
Handful of chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp garlic powder
- Soak the uncooked quinoa in plenty of cold water for at least 24 hours. You can’t mess about with this part, it has to be soaked. Drain and set aside.
- Place the soya in a bowl and allow to sit at room temperature to defrost for 30 minutes or so.
- In a separate bowl, grate or spiralise the courgette and leave for 10 minutes in a sieve to remove the excess water
- In the meantime, place the quinoa in a high speed food processor and whizz on full power until completely smooth. You have to be patient and get the right consistency for it to work. Give the processor a break if you need to to prevent overheating and keep scraping the sides. I usually make a load and it freezes well so you don’t have to go through this process every time. Once its smooth (the consistency of a good nut butter) its done.
- Remove the quinoa and set aside.
- Add the bread to the processor and whizz briefly into crumbs then add the red onion, marmite, rapeseed oil, parsley, garlic powder and salt.
- Mix to bind and then add to the quinoa.
- Finally add courgette after squeezing out any excess water and mix well. At this stage the mixture will be quite wet and you will never believe it can turn into a ball but fear not. Line a baking tray with rapeseed oil spray and dollop the mixture into balls. Don’t worry if there are not perfectly shaped you can always reshape them as they cook.
- Bake at 210 for 30 minutes and half way through flip them over.
Serve with a bowl of pasta and your favourite tomato sauce.