Oh What A (Friday) Night!
Ok, so I do realise the fact it’s now Tuesday here in New York and I’m writing to you about last Friday BUT! I took a social media break over the weekend to rest, recuperate and spend time with a good friends after an EPIC week of exams and cooking. I’m back on the blogwaves today to share the following Friday Night Dinner #foodporn! I promised I would, so here it is: our Fabulous Friday Night Dinner offerings.
Thank you to everyone who came out in support – the night was a fun one indeed! It was an absolute pleasure to serve everyone who attended – we fed a PACKED house which was super exciting. I am SO proud of all my amazingly talented chefmates: Natalia, Mecca, Mariela, Jen, Anthony, Seiko, Marisa and Shelly – WE DID IT!!
For those of you elsewhere in the world, I have been granted special-chef-permission from my vivacious vegan #chefbestie, Marisa, to share our delish lentil ‘meat’ball recipe. This element was her brainchild, one of the main parts of our entree dish (featured in the main picture of this post). Get creative and pair these ‘meat’balls with your favourite sauce, some healthy protein and cleansing vegetables – those elements combined = a great, nutritious meal.
Red Lentil Polpettes
Servings: 30 mini ‘meat’balls
- ½ cup + 2 tbs red lentils
- 3.5 oz/100g sweet onion, chopped into small pieces
- ¼ lb/113 g shiitake mushrooms, grilled and mixed with 1 & ½ tsp tomato paste + 2 tbs red wine
- ½ medium eggplant, roasted over open flame, flesh scooped out and mashed
- 2 roasted garlic cloves
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 1 tsp soy sauce (or you can use the gluten free version called tamari)
- ½ cup gluten-free rolled oats, ground (or you can use oat flour)
- ¾ tsp paprika
- Pinch of cayenne pepper (about ¼ tsp)
- ¾ tsp fennel seeds ('lucknow' fennel seeds work best)
- ¾ tsp sea salt
- Rinse lentils and place in a pot with 2 & ¼ cups cold water, with a bouquet garni (a mini sachet you can easily make from cheesecloth) with 1 bay leaf, 2oz/50g sweet onion, ¼ teaspoon fennel, ¼ teaspoon paprika, 5 coriander seeds. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer gently for 10-15 mins, or until tender. Drain well, remove bouquet garni and set aside.
- Place cooked lentils in a mixing bowl. Add the rest of the onion along with garlic, mushrooms, eggplant, olive oil, oats, paprika, cayenne, fennel seeds, sea salt and soy sauce/tamari. Stir until combined and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375F/190C and line a baking tray with baking paper. Form 30 small balls with a mini ice cream scoop or melon baller and the palms of your hands. Place them on a baking tray to bake for 15 minutes or until they brown.
- Take out of oven and lightly brush with a little extra virgin olive oil. Turn up oven to 500F/260C and continue to bake for an additional few minutes.