Lately, I’ve been using Baked Veggie Balls for my daily proteins. Besides being the perfect side salad, Baked Veggie Balls can also double as a topping for Budha Bowl. They are extremely nutritious, with high vitamin content and low calorie levels. All you need is a bunch of Herbs and a pack of Tofu, and you’ll be good to go.
Today’s recipe is based on two major ingredients, Leek and Chard. Chard is considered to be a superfood by some; it is packed with Zinc, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Vitamin C, and fibre. It is a green leafy vegetable that not only gives you all your essential nutrients but also tastes very good at the same time.
Grated, Not Blended!
Baked Veggies Balls can be extremely easy to make if you have an electronic food processor or even a hand grater. The hand grater would be the best option here if you want the Tofu to retain its moisture and texture. Later on, if you end up with excessive moisture, you can always add more dry ingredients to balance things out.
What about the Veggies?
Add at least 1 tbsp of Olive Oil to a frying pan and turn on the heating. Once the oil gets a little warm, chop the green part of the Chard and stir fry in the Olive Oil for around 2 minutes. Now, add the chopped Leek and continue frying for about 5 to 7 minutes (make sure everything gets softened by then). Meanwhile, chop the herbs you’re using with a food processor or simply by hand. You could use Coriander, Parsley, or Dill for the herbs – depends completely on your personal taste. Once finely chopped, add them to a bowl along with Chard, Leek, and all other ingredients.
How to stick the balls together?
Eggs are the most effective and commonly used binding agent with most dishes, but since we’re going for a strictly vegan recipe, we can not use them here. We need another binding ingredient that acts as a glue to the other ingredients and is healthy at the same time. For these Baked Veggie Balls, we’ll be using two different binding agents; one being Oats, and the other being Chia Seeds. Chia Seeds work as Flex Seeds, in the sense that when they are mixed in water, the solution becomes extremely sticky. Like Flex Seeds, they are also rich in Proteins and Fibre and are an excellent source of Omega-3.
Use your hands!
Don’t be afraid of your hands getting a little messy. Pat a bit of Olive Oil on your hands and start forming these balls with the palm of your hands. Remember to do it with love and care and you will end up with some perfectly-shaped veggie balls. Just make sure that the oven and a baking tray is ready before you start making these balls.
What about dressing?
Veggie balls go perfectly with all kinds of dressings. I personally recommend some nice Tahini (honestly, I’m obsessed with tahini myself). For some more dressing ideas, click here.
Chard & Leek Vegan Tofu Balls
- 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- 1 pack chard only the green part
- 1 pack fresh herbs parsley, coriander, dill , mint
- 300 gram firm tofu
- 2 tbsp chia seed
- 4 tbsp quaker
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp paper
- 2 cloves garlic opional
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Put extra virgin olive oil to medium heat. Add in chopped Chard (only the green part). After 2 minutes, add the leek and stir fry for around 5 to 10 minutes.
- Put Herbs, Garlic, Chard, and Leek into a food processor and blitz till nicely chopped. Make sure that the mixture retains its texture.
- Transfer everything to a mixing bowl. Add the grated Tofu, Chia, Salt, Paper, and Quaker. Stir to mix. Roll the mixture into flat ping-pong-sized balls and place them on a tray lined with baking paper (oil the tray before you put the balls).
- Bake for 30 minutes. Wait to cool and enjoy.