Minty Bean Balls – a new recipe

Well, sort of balls...

Along with sewing and dancing, Tracey – my everyday ego – enjoys cooking.  I have been missing that lately with so many other deadlines, shows, sewing projects for clients on the go.  Today, I was able to sleep in, make whole wheat pizza crusts to freeze for easy meals this week, start some 24 hour whole wheat, no-knead bread, and do some groceries.

We have an invite to go to some friends for supper – another luxury at this time of year – and I wanted to bring something light and fun as an appetizer.  Even though I did buy groceries, I had not thought about what I wanted to make or bring. Upon arriving home and scanning the fridge and cupboards, I came up with these.

Based loosely on the concept of falafels – or perhaps simply inspired by falafels, I took the idea and ran healthy with it.

  • 1 can of mixed beans [ included chickpeas, kidney beans, pintos and black beans I think], drained and rinsed.
  • 1/4 cup tahini 
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves [ organic from my back yard]

Dump it all together and use a blender/food processor/hand blender to puree it all together.  Make balls on an oiled cookie sheet, and bake in a 400 degree oven for  about 30 minutes.  If you prefer to fry them – go ahead. I don’t like to add too much extra fat, so I wanted to see how they turn out as a baked product.

Changes I will try next time:

Mine was very soft – as you can see in the picture, they did not hold their shape as balls.  I had to make dropped balls from a spoon. I think I would add more beans or less tahini.  Or possibly add some ground flax seeds or other seeds/nuts.  They would have the consistency of cookie dough, and then can be rolled by hand.

I would suggest that if you have garlic and onion and like them, add some.  I cannot eat these without spending the next day clearing my throat, so I avoid them, but for most people they would find them a standard addition.  Say 1 clove garlic and 1/2 a small onion, both minced and then purees with the rest.

You can always use different fresh herbs too – cilantro, parsley, basil, hmm, whatever works for you.

We will be serving them with some garlic mayonnaise for those who want a dipping sauce tonight, but I have thoughts of these going really well as an alternative to meatballs in many recipes/meals.

If you try this, or create your own variation, I would love to hear!

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