A vegetarian option for Italian meatball lovers! These little polpetti (meatballs) have just the same delicious flavor and a wonderful texture, but without the meat! Serve along side a nice bowl of pasta and sauce.
Author: Maria Tadic
Recipe type: Main Dish
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium eggplant, finely diced
1 medium onion, finely diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tsp salt and pepper
½ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried rosemary
¼ chopped fresh parsley
lemon zest, from 1 lemon
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
2 eggs, beaten
1½ cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1 cup almond flour
Preheat oven to 400 F.
In a large saute pan, heat olive over medium heat. Add eggplant, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes if using and saute until beginning to break down, about 7 minutes. Add onion and garlic and continue to cook another 5-7 minutes or until onions are translucent.
Add in oregano, rosemary, parsley and lemon zest. Stir to combine. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl beat eggs and parmesan cheese together.
In a food processor add ½ of the eggplant mixture and pulse until is finely chopped - almost into a paste.
Add the processed eggplant into the egg and cheese mixture. Finally add in the rest of the un-processed eggplant mixture stirring to combine completely.
Add in the bread crumbs slowly - you may not need all of them. Add the almond flour and stir to combine well.
Form into golf-ball sized portions and roll into meatballs. Place on a greased baking sheet about 1" apart. This makes about 18-20 meatballs.
Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes or until tops are golden brown. Serve warm with tomato sauce and a side of whole wheat pasta!