Meatless Monday | Spinach Balls

You know the love affair that we have been having with meatballs, right?  It is certainly a go-to-recipe when I need something quick and delicious to serve.  One of the things I love about meatballs is the creativity that can go into the recipe.  From traditional Italian meatballs to a saucy Asian version, the choices are quite limitless.  This spinach balls are no exception, and the wonderful thing is they are vegetarian.

Spinach Balls

Over the holidays, we were invited to a soiree, and one of the tantalizing appetizers that was served was spinach balls.  Yes, the vegetarian version of a meatball.  Genius, and why had I thought of it before?  Normally, I am the girl hovering over the cheese plate during a cocktail party, this time I was the girl hoarding the spinach balls.  They were extraordinary.  At that moment, I became acquainted with Antonio Carluccio, and his book the Collection.  Mr. Carluccio is an Italian chef from the Piedmont area of Italy, who relocated to the UK in the 70′s to work in the wine business.  In the 1990′s Carluccio and his wife, opened an Italian shop in London, called Carluccio’s.  Prior to opening the shop, Mr. Carluccio worked at Neal Street Restaurant, where Jamie Oliver worked under him.  Today, Carluccio’s has over 55 locations throughout the UK.  In addition to the cafe locations, Carluccio has written numerous cookbooks, and done a few series for the BBC.  The Collection is a beautiful cookbook, full of traditional Italian recipes.  I have only made this particular recipe as well as another;  but, can tell you, that these recipes are brilliant, and the cookbook is going to get a lot of use this year.  It is truly a special cookbook that has become a lovely addition to our home kitchen.

Spinach Balls

You are going to adore this recipe, I just know it.  Simple to make, and lovely with every bite.  The balls are made out of a mixture of fresh spinach, breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.  I slightly adapted the recipe by using more spinach, less cheese, and panko.  Each ball came out perfectly light and bursting with flavor.  This recipe for Spinach Balls, can be served two ways, either as an appetizer or as a main dish.  Both times that I have made it over the past two weeks, I have served as a main dish.  This particular time I served the spinach balls with a garlicky, lemon aioli sauce, and a generous green salad.  Perfectly light meal for Meatless Monday or for your next vegetarian inspired dinner party.

Just wait until you see what other “vegetarian” inspired meatless balls I am working on!!

 

Recipe:  Spinach Balls

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds spinach
  • 1 cup panko
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1 clove garlic mashed
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • canola oil

How To:

  1. Bring a dutch oven full of water to a boil.
  2. Blanch the spinach for 1 – 2 minutes.
  3. Drain into a colander.
  4. Immediately rinse with very cold water to stop the cooking process.
  5. Using your hands wring the water out of the spinach. Do this by taking about 1/4 cup of spinach into your hands and wring until no water runs from the spinach.
  6. Chop all of the spinach with a knife. Do not use a food processor or you will have mush.
  7. Place the spinach, panko, cheese, nutmeg, garlic and salt into a large mixing bowl.
  8. Beat the eggs in a separate mixing bowl, then add to the spinach mixture.
  9. Using your hands mix well.
  10. Form into small spinach balls.
  11. Add about 1″ of canola oil to a large frying pan.
  12. Heat over medium heat.
  13. In batches, brown the spinach balls until golden brown; about 2 minutes per side.
  14. Remove with a slotted spoon or tongs, set aside on a paper towel.
  15. Continue browning the spinach balls.
  16. Serve.
  17. Eat.

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. These might be a ‘meatless Monday’ meal here, but I could eat these every day of the week! Wonderful!

  2. These sound great guys! And I love nutmeg with spinach–classic. If you had a Spinach Ball Eating Contest, I just might win that thing! lol

  3. paker says:

    looks great! but vegetarians can’t have parmesan because it’s made from rennet, which is made from the lining of an animals stomach. so maybe next meatless monday you could use a different cheese? thanks xx

  4. Thanks Ruby. I just checked the container of Parmesan cheese I purchased, and it is vegetarian friendly. This is a good thing to know, and I will be keeping me eyes open next time I buy it!

  5. Sold! Strangely, in all my vegetarian years, I’ve never attempted anything like this. I love the look of them and think they would be great as appetizers too!

  6. Thank you for showing me this one! I’ll be trying it soon! =D

  7. Could you use frozen spinach with this recipe?

  8. Jenn, you can use frozen spinach. Be sure to thaw it out, rinse with cold water and drain really well. I use cheesecloth, wrap it up inside and twist and squeeze until no water is left. Let me know how it works for you. We love this recipe. ~ Denise

  9. Thanks for the response, Denise! Going to try this for dinner tonight, really looking forward to it! Will let you know how it turns out!

  10. Wow. So. Good. I’m pretty sure that my 2 year old (who thinks he’s allergic to veggies in all shapes and sizes) ate half a pound of spinach tonight! I’m going to do a blog post on them in the next day or two – thanks so much for the recipe!! We’ll definitely make this again!!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Spinach balls have been gracing our table very often since the arrival of this amazing book.  Then I discovered the recipe for Courgette Sauce, and the two are a marriage made in heaven.  Trust me, once you try this creamy, but dairy free (I have adapted it to be) sauce, you will be enjoying it as much as we have been.  Simplicity is key to this recipe.  Fresh zucchini is finely grated, then mixed together with lots of garlic, chili flakes and olive oil.  I opted not to use parmesan, which was a fine decision as the sauce still came out creamy.  The finely grated zucchini melts into the olive oil to create a sauce which clings onto every piece of pasta.  Don’t forget the spinach balls! [...]

  2. [...] Spinach Balls – Chez Us [...]

  3. Meatless Monday: Spinachballs | You Pinspire Me says:

    […] came across the Spinachballs at Denise’s blog, Chez Us.  Head over there to take a look at the AMAZING recipes and photos that she posts, as well as […]

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