I’m not a huge lover of mock beef – for me, its only uses are in tacos, lasagna, and as meatballs.
These meatballs, in particular. Soft enough to break with a fork after being soaked in sauce, yet tough enough to not break down in sauce, either. A tasty addition to your favourite spaghetti recipe. This winter, I’m going to try serving them in a sweet-and-sour sauce like my mom did when I was an omnivore kid – I’ll let you know if it works.
The great thing about this recipe is how easy it is. Mix stuff together, bake in oven. You’ll need only about 10 minutes of hands-on time, so it’s perfect if you want something hearty but are feeling lazy, or want something that you can make with your kids. Keep in mind that when I say that you have to bake this for a long time, I really mean it – 40 minutes is needed, even though they’ll look “done” after 20.
Vegan Meatballs – recipe by Agent Minty
Makes approximately 2 dozen 1-inch balls
- 1 package (12oz/340g) vegan “ground round” or similar
- 3 Tbsp red wine
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp dried sage
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
- 7 Tbsp (well packed) gluten powder
- Preheat oven to 390F.
- Combine all ingredients except gluten powder, and mix well.
- Add half of gluten powder, and stir well.
- Add last of gluten powder tablespoon by tablespoon, stirring between additions.
- After adding last of gluten, knead with hands for about two minutes, until it starts to ball together.
- Form into 1-inch balls.
- Place balls on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
- Spray balls generously with cooking spray (I used an olive-oil baking spray), or brush with oil.
- Bake in the centre of the oven for 30 minutes, shaking sheet halfway through to turn over the meatballs.
- Turn off the oven and let meatballs cool inside for at least 10 minutes.
Meatballs will have shrunken noticeably by this point!
- Store in a sealed container for a few days as is, if desired.
- Add to hot spaghetti sauce and simmer for 10 minutes before serving.
This is sublime Canadian comfort food. Flaky savoury dough encasing flavourful “meat” and onions. This was a delicious meat alternative for Christmas dinner (my Brother-in-law didn’t realize that it was veg!), and the MVP on Boxing Day. Try it either accompanied with a light salad, or alongside potatoes with both smothered in gravy.
Vegan Tourtière: An original recipe by Agent Minty
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 90g or 6 Tbsp refined coconut oil (if you can’t find this, use shortening)
- 45g or 3Tbsp margarine (soft table margarine is OK here)
- 1/4 cup cold water
- 3 Tbsp malt vinegar (apple cider vinegar will also work)
- 1/3 loaf Seitan Turkey or 3/4 of one commercial Torfurky roast, cooked and stuffing removed
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 medium onion
- 1 garlic clove
- 6 or so mushrooms
- 1 rib of celery
- 1/2 carrot
- approximately 1/4 c dry white wine
- 1.5 cups vegetarian bouillon
- 2 tsp dried sage
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/4 c chopped fresh or 2 Tbsp dried parsley
- 3 Tbsp non-dairy milk
- 1 tsp margarine
- 1/2 tsp Psyllium husk (Often sold as Metamucil) *optional*
First, prepare the pastry dough:
- Combine flour and salt in a large bowl.
- Drop in tablespoon-sized blobs of coconut oil and margarine, shaking bowl between additions.
- Using a pastry cutter or two knives, cut fat into flour until the largest lumps are slightly less than pea-sized.
- make a well in the centre and add in all of the cold water.
- Mix in with the edge of a spatula until mostly combined.
- Sprinkle half of the vinegar over the mixture, mix in a few stirs, then add the rest.
- Stir a few times – dough should be slightly sticky, slightly crumbly. If it doesn’t hold together at all, add another Tablespoon or so of water.
- Turn out onto a sheet of waxed paper and knead a few times.
- Form into a puck about an inch and a half thick, and place in the refrigerator to cool.
Prepare the filling:
- Cut your loaf into 1-2 inch cubes.
- Use a food processor to mince the cubes of loaf until they are the size of TVP or “ground beef” crumbles.
- In a large-diameter pot with a lid, heat up half of the oil on Medium.
- Add in ground loaf, stirring, and cook for 2 minutes.
- Chop up onions, garlic, mushrooms, carrots, and celery.
- Add chopped vegetables and remaining oil, and stir well to combine.
- Turn heat down to medium-low and cover pot with lid.
- Cook, stirring every 2 minutes, until onions are translucent – about 10 minutes.
Some loaf will stick to the pan. This is normal.
- Deglaze the pan by adding white wine and gently scraping away stuck bits with a spatula or wooden spoon.
- Add broth – you want food to be about 3/4 covered, so add another 1/2 cup water if needed.
- Bring to a simmer and cover with lid.
- Stir every few minutes and simmer until only a few mm of liquid is left on the bottom of the pot.
- Stir in sage, thyme, and parsley
- Turn off heat and set pot on an unused element or trivet to cool slightly.
- Preheat over to 375F.
- Set pastry on the counter and let warm up for about 5 minutes.
- Using lots of flour, roll out dough to approximately 5mm thick. Cut into a ~15-inch circle.
- Transfer circle of dough to a standard 9-inch pie plate and gently press to fit.
- Use small bits of cut-off dough to patch any holes or cracks in the bottom or sides of the crust.
- Pour filling into crust and level out.
- Take cut-off scraps and knead together a few times.
- Roll out with more flour to a 10-inch circle.
- Place on top of the pie filling.
- Fold bottom crust’s edges over top and crimp with a fork to seal. Slit top in several places.
- Microwave margarine and milk together.
- If you have it, stir in psyllium husk. This thickens the mix and also helps it cling to the pastry.
- Brush every part of the exposed crust with the milk/margarine mix and cover edges of pie with tinfoil or a ring-style shield.
- Bake in centre of the oven for 30 minutes.
- Remove crust shield and bake for another 10 minutes.