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Aubergine 'Meat' Balls with Courgetti

Ditch the meat this week and celebrate National Vegetarian Week! It runs until the 22nd May so rustle up a vegetarian feast and impress everyone you know.

To celebrate I have created a healthy and light version of one of my all time favourites. I made it for a dinner party recently and completely fooled everyone into thinking there was meat in the dish and they were so surprised to discover the magic ingredient was aubergine!

Ladies and gentlemen, I present....Courgetti and 'Meat' balls!


For the Aubergine balls

2 tbsp coconut oil

2 large aubergines cut into small cubes

1 small red onion finely chopped

3 crushed garlic cloves

1 green chilli finely chopped

Handful of pitted olives

4 tbsp sesame seeds

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

200g ground almonds

Handful of fresh parsley

Handful of fresh oregano

Handful of fresh basil leaves

Juice of one lemon

1/2 tsp salt

Dash of black pepper

A little buckwheat or spelt flour to bind

For the tomato sauce

400g tin of cherry tomatoes

400g fresh tomatoes, skinned and finely chopped

2 tbsp tomato puree

1 tbsp coconut oil

1 small red onion, finely chopped

2 crushed garlic cloves

Pinch of coconut sugar/maple syrup

1/4 tsp salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Handful of basil leaves

Handful of fresh chopped oregano

1/4 small glass of red wine

4 tbsp water


For the tomato sauce

Heat the coconut oil in medium saucepan on medium heat. Add the onions and cook for 5-7 minutes. Stirring all the time. Add the garlic and cook for 2 mins.

Add the tomatoes, coconut sugar or maple syrup, herbs, wine, water, salt and pepper, tomato puree and mix well.

Bring up to a simmer, then reduce heat and cook over a low heat for approx 30 mins.

For the Aubergine balls

Melt 1 tbsp of the coconut oil in a large frying pan. Add the onion and aubergine cubes and fry over a medium heat for about 7-10 minutes until they start to colour, stirring all the time. Add the garlic and lemon juice and cook for a further minute. Remove from the heat and put into a food processor with the onion, garlic, chilli, olives, parsley, basil, oregano, ground almonds, sesame seeds and apple cider vinegar and mix until it starts to bind together.

If mixture appears too wet then add some more ground almonds or a dash of melted coconut if it gets a little dry and sprinkle a little buckwheat or spelt flour onto a board and on your hands. Then shape the mixture into approx 12 balls. Melt a tablespoon of coconut oil in a large frying pan and cook the balls for approx 10-15 mins until browned.

Serve with the tomato sauce and courgetti!

If you don't know how to make Courgetti then I'd recommend getting your hands on a Veggi Spaghetti. It's a brilliant tool and is much cheaper than a Spiralizer (it was £9.99 as opposed to around £25!). It makes it all so easy and it's my new favourite kitchen accessory! Turns your lovely vegetables into spaghetti, tagliatelle or wide ribbons.

Get your hands on one here!

Happy National Vegetarian week everybody!

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