Thursday, July 28, 2011

(Better than) Meatballs Recipe

What you'll need:

1/4 of one large white onion
1 small handful of sundried tomatoes in olive oil
1 carrot
Celery salt (or any kind of fine salt will do)
1 1/2 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
Liquid smoke
2 Boca 'original vegan' patties

Step 1: Microwave (or bake them if you're feeling fancy) Boca burgers for 2-4 minutes, flipping over halfway through. While you're waiting...
Step 2: Chop up onion then puree with sundried tomatoes
Step 3: Sliver carrot, then give it a rough chop and add to onion and sundried tomato puree and blend (for easier ball molding later, be sure the carrots end up fairly finely chopped. You can have them as big as shown in the picture, and that's fine but probably no bigger. You can puree the carrot as well and it turns out just as nice.)
Step 4: Add a pinch of celery salt  (you can adjust the amount later in the recipe if you want more, but you most likely won't need it), a teeny tiny bit of liquid smoke (a small dash. It's easy to accidentally overdo it with the liquid smoke so don't try to pour the right amount in.), about 1 1/2 teaspoons (or to taste) of FINELY ground black pepper, and start with about 1 teaspoon of garlic powder depending on your tastes.
Step 5: Take this mixture, and pour it onto the cooled, microwaved Boca burgers. Now mix together with your hands til it looks like this:

 The great thing about Boca burgers is that they absorb whatever flavor you put into them. I actually hate Boca burgers on their own, but I love to use them as a kind of blank canvas for cooking.

Step 6: Now you're going to want to microwave (or bake) this mixture to get out some excess moisture. Put it in the microwave for about 1-2 minutes each time, and toss around a bit in between. Stop when it looks about like this:

Step 7: This is my favorite part (besides eating them of course). Roll the mixture into balls, whatever size you prefer. Since they're very flavorful, I like them to be a little on the small side. You also get a higher percentage of crunchy coating on them when they're smaller. As you can see by mine, they don't have to be perfect. You'll be stuffing your face with these so fast you wont even care or notice what they look like!

If your balls are still really moist, at this point you can microwave them a bit longer. I also like to give them a taste before I mold them and make any adjustments I might need to the seasoning (a bit more garlic or a bit more pepper).

Step 8: Heat a pan with a generous coating of olive oil on medium-high heat. Be sure the oil is hot enough before you put in the balls - you don't want them to stick to the pan and fall apart! To check the heat, you can put a tiny bit of the mixture into the pan and listen for the sizzling sound and little bubbles coming up.

When you have that down, it's time to put in your balls. When you see the edges of the balls turning a nice golden brown, turn them (I like to use tongs as you can see). Keep turning 'til all sides are golden, and they're done!

Final step: Serve with spaghetti or enjoy on their own! Mmmmmm.

P.S. Ignore the gross looking spaghetti (I left it out just a taaad too long).
       These are also delicious baked in the oven, they just won't have the same crispy coating.


  1. These are awesome! I only have the suggestion of adding bread crumbs, which absorb the liquid a bit more and give just a bit more texture.
    And your spaghetti doesn't look bad

  2. Thanks! And I wouldn't have thought of that. Great idea! I try to dry the mixture out a lot but it does take a lot of patience I guess - bread crumbs would sure make it easier. :)