Last night I had my sister and her kiddos come over for dinner. Nothing fancy, nothing to complicated, just something fast and something that I knew the littles would eat. Spaghetti and meatballs, except replace meatballs were bean balls So they came, we played, did a little drawing and had a bit of first grad gossip. Then came dinner time when I was told by one little that she was not going to eat.. She had pasta for lunch. Well I made her sit anyway and she mainly just ate carrots (I was ok with that) Then the other little was all into his pasta and bean balls, 1 down, 3 more to go, when the mister let slip that the meatballs were not really meat. He ate around the remaining balls, said he didn't want them anymore. And my sister, well she doesn't eat anything that is not pizza.
Good thing a neighbor stopped by while we were eating. He had a few of the balls and told me that they were amazing. I needed someone to tell me that.
So yeah, the littles were not overly enthused with the ball, but the Mister the Neighbor, and I thought that they were awesome and delicious. Maybe next time I will make sure that pasta was not lunch and tell Nick to keep his mouth shut and stop talking about balls at the dinner table.
I feel like I don't need to tell you how to boil pasta or heat up the sauce, so I left that portion of the recipe out. I have faith that you are capable in doing that part without my instruction.
The bean ball stuff. Chickpeas (soaked and cooked or canned), sweet potato, carrot, onion, and some chick pea flour. Dried garlic, basil and oregano. Salt and pepper and a little bit of olive oil. Small chop all the veggies and toss them and the dry spices into a skillet with a drizzle or two of olive oil. Stick on medium heat and add about 1/4 cup of water to pan. Top with slid and let veggies cook down until soft and fragrant.
Add the cooked veggies to a food processor or blender with the rinsed and drained chickpeas. The mixture gets pulsed until combined, keeping a little bit of chunkiness. Now go warhead and taste the mixture. Add another pinch or two of salt , pepper or any of the spices that you think it need. Dump the mixture into a bowl and mix in the chickpea flour than stink the mixture into the fridge for a least a 1/2 hour. Cooling to off is really important to forming the balls. If you don't, it's much harder to keep mixture from falling apart and sticking to your hands.
After the mixture has had time to cool and set, start rolling the mixture into balls roughly the size of ping pong balls. In a shallow bowl, add a few tablespoons of the chickpea flour with a pinch of salt, pepper and garlic powder. Take each ball and roll in flour and place each ball on a well oiled baking sheet. When the balls are all rolled, stick into the oven and bake away for about 30-40 minutes, flipping balls after about 20. After you flip the balls, get the pasta ready so its finished about the same time the balls are done.You pasta and sauce is cooked and the balls are all crispy and oh so nice.
Serve balls over pasta with sauce and eat with a fork.
Your day is now complete.. balls and all.
Spaghetti and Bean Balls
makes about 20 balls
- 4 Cups (or 2 cans) Cooked, Rinsed and Drained ChickPeas
- 1 Small Sweet Potato
- 1 Small Onion
- 1 Carrot
- 1/4 Cup Chickpea Flour plus extra to roll balls in
- 1 Heaping Teaspoon Basil
- 1 Heaping Teaspoon Oregano
- 1 Heaping Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- Olive or Vegetable Oil
- Salt and Pepper
- Your choice of Spaghetti (Use Vegan and or Gluten Free if needed) Prepared as package recommends
- Marinara or Pasta Sauce of your choice
Preheat Oven to 425 degrees
Small dice the carrot, onion and sweet potato and toss into a skillet on medium high heat with a splash of oil. Add in the dry spices and add in about a quarter cup of water. stir and cover the skillet with a lid and let the veggies cook down until the water has evaporated and the veggies are tender.
Add rinsed and drained chickpeas to a food processor with the cooked veggie mixture. Pulse together until the mixture is combined and slightly smooth, but still with a little bit of texture left.Place bean mixture in a bowl and mix in the 1/4 cup of chickpea flour. and stick in the fridge for a least a 1/2 hour to cool. (Mixture can be made a day ahead if you want)
Once the mixture has time to cool and set up , remove from fridge and with a light head, roll mixture into ping-pong sized balls. In a separate shallow dish add a bit of chickpea flour with a pinch of salt and pepper. Roll each ball in the flour mixture and place balls on a well oiled baking sheet. Once balls ae made, stick into the oven and bake for about 30-40 minutes, flipping after about 20 minutes. The balls are done when the outsides are once and golden brown and crispy. After about 30 minutes, get to cooking your pasta and mariana sauce.
Once the pasta and sauce is done, plate it and toss on some of those awesome bean balls!
Bean balls also make fantastic bean ball sandwiches or bean balls on a toothpick.