Here's a lovely recipe that has turned into so much more than M balls. In our home, we make this recipe to be eaten in a variety of different ways. On top of a bowl of pasta, as fillings for homemade wraps, as part of a buddha bowl, fillings for mini M pastry rolls, at a BBQ and with our Ron Burgundy sauce.
Serves: 4 (8 - 10 balls)
You will need...
1-2 tbsp of olive oil + extra to grease your tray
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp of dried rosemary
250g of mushrooms, finely chopped, slice the very end of the stalk off and include the rest of the stalk (button mushrooms have a great flavour in this dish)
a pinch of chilli flakes *
12 sundried tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 can of soaked chickpeas (230g drained weight), drain and rinse
2 - 4 tbsp of ground almonds **
a handful of spinach (optional extra)
* Add the amount that makes your taste buds happy. I've found for my family that a pinch is a great balance of flavours in the dish.
** You may need to adjust the ground almonds if your mixture is too wet to form balls.
Caption: left - Hand chopped mushrooms and sun dried tomatoes.
right - The mixture in the pan before adding ground almonds.
How to create...
Preheat the oven to 180' and grease an oven dish or tray.
Option 1: Finely dice or grate the mushrooms into small pieces, roughly chop the sundried tomatoes and drain and rinse the chickpeas. Option 2: Pop the mushrooms and sundried tomatoes into a food processor and whizz the mushrooms into small pieces. Be careful not to over-blend. Occasionally, I need to chop any sundried tomatoes by hand that escape being chopped fully. Drain and rinse the chickpeas.
In a large frying pan sauté the garlic and rosemary in the olive oil on a medium heat until the garlic is slightly golden.
Then add the mushrooms, sundried tomatoes and chilli flakes. Cook for 3-4 minutes before adding the chickpeas. Cook until the chickpeas start to soften. This can vary but roughly for around 5 minutes.
If adding spinach add this in the last minute so it doesn't over cook.
Option 1: Mash the mixture using a fork/potato masher until the mixture combines leaving a few chunky pieces for texture. Option 2: Pop the mixture into a food processor until the mixture combines leaving a few chunky pieces for texture. I use the pulse setting for this.
Mix in the ground almonds 1 tbsp at a time until the mixture starts to come together. The ground almonds will dry the mixture slightly so you can form balls/patties.
Use a tbsp or an ice cream scoop to help divide the mixture. Carefully shape into balls using your hands.
Place the balls on your greased oven dish with space between each ball and cook for 20 minutes or until they're firm to the touch.
You can serve these hot or cold. If you have any leftovers, store them in an airtight reusable container in the fridge for 2-3 days.
I hope you enjoy creating,
p.s. I'd love to hear if you've made these and what you had them with :)
Did you know...
Mushrooms are a rich source of fibre (great for a healthy gut), selenium (for bone health), vitamin C (an antioxidant), vitamin D (helps the absorption and metabolism of calcium for bone health) and also help in increasing the strength of your immune system (1).