Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Vegan 'Meat'ball Sub

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VB's love of "turd dogs" is well documented. Despite the resemblance to poop, they are very delicious and full of herbs and spices. I made it again recently and thought to myself: why not make some meatballs for a change? To make these meatballs, I tweaked the original turd dog recipe to improve upon the texture so they are firmer and 'meatier." I'm quite pleased with the result! I think it will be a favorite around here. Of course, these do not resemble poop. Whether that's good or bad really depends on your personal feelings about poop on plate -- hilarious or gross?

For this meatball sub recipe (adapted from turd dogs from Yeah, That Vegan Shit), you will need:
  • 1 French baguette, sliced open and scooped inside
  • slices of mozzarella or provolone (in this case, I used soy mozzarella)
  • 1 portion marinara sauce, recipe below
  • 1 portion meatball mix, recipe below
For the meatballs, you'll need
  • 1 15-ounce can pinto beans, drained, rinsed and mashed
  • 4 ounces firm bean curd or extra firm tofu, finely crumbled
  • 1 cup cold vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for greasing
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or grated
  • 1 1/4 cups wheat gluten
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oragano
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Begin by combining all the ingredients. Mix well. Knead mixture by hand until it has some elasticity, about 5 to 10 minutes. Roll mixture into balls about 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter. Place balls in an oven-proof pan greased with olive oil. Roast in oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour, turn the meatballs over once at the half way mark. Meatballs are done when browned and slightly crusty on the outside.

Uncooked Vegan Meatballs
For the marinara sauce, you'll need:
  • 2 medium shallots, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 sprigs thyme, minced
  • 1 sprig oregano, minced
  • 1 sprig rosemary, minced
  • 1 26-ounce can skinless whole tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
Begin by sweating shallots and red pepper flakes in olive oil until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, thyme, oregano and rosemary. Cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add canned tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper. Reduce to simmer and cook for 30 minutes to an hour. Break up chunks of tomatoes throughout the cooking process with spoon or spatula.

To assemble, place slices of mozzarella or provolone at the bottom of the sliced baguette, add meatballs and top with marinara sauce.

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