Lentil Meatballs in Spiced Pumpkin Tomato Sauce

Things have been crazy the last few weeks so I ended up skipping last week's posts but I've made quite a few recipes in the last few days so I should be set to keep posting throughout all of the closures/quarantines. If it comes down to it I'll try to get creative with the grains/canned veggies in my pantry. We made this recipe a few weeks ago and it was such a great lunch. The lentil meatballs held up to the sauce really well and it was a perfect reheat for a work lunch as well. I haven't always been a fan of pumpkin in savory recipes but the additions to the sauce add a nice flavor and the color is stunning.

Recipe slightly adapted from The Awesome Green.

For the meatballs
-2 cups cooked lentils
-1/2 cup walnuts
-1 onion diced
-2 garlic cloves, minced
-1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
-1 teaspoon cumin
-1 large bunch microgreens, roughly chopped
-2 tablespoons panko breadcrumbs
-1 teaspoon coconut oil
-1/2 teaspoon sea salt

For the sauce
-2 cups diced tomatoes
-4 tablespoons pumpkin puree
-1/2 cup vegetable broth
-1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
-3 garlic cloves, minced
-1 medium onion, diced
-2 teaspoons turmeric
-1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
-1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
-1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
-1/4 teaspoon sea salt
-Freshly ground black pepper
To serve: cooked brown rice, lime wedges, coconut milk, and microgreens

Preheat the oven to 350 and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a food processor combine the walnuts and pulse until they are crumbled. Add all of the other meatball ingredients to the bowl of the food processor and pulse four or five times -- your mixture should still have texture and not be overly mushy.

Shape the mixture into about 20 meatballs and line them up on the baking sheet. Drizzle with coconut oil and bake for 30 minutes.

While the meatballs are baking prepare the sauce. Add the onion into a large skillet with a tablespoon of water and cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Add the tomatoes, pumpkin puree, broth, coconut milk, garlic, and spices. Stir to combine and bring to boil over medium heat. Simmer for 10 minutes, and then season with salt and pepper. Use an immersion blender to puree the sauce into a creamy sauce.

To serve layer brown rice in the bottom of a bowl, topped with five lentil meatballs, 1/4 of the sauce mixture, a drizzle of coconut milk, lime wedges, and microgreens.


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