Lentil Meatballs with Mushroom Gravy

Hello friends! I realize that I have not posted in a while – I am currently in Hawaii with family! I am posting this from my bed (it’s only 7:30 here). Soon, I will go down for some breakfast and maybe go for a run. Life couldn’t be better! Chances are you won’t be hearing much from me for the next week or so, although perhaps I will think of something appropriate to share (but I’m not promising anything!)

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Did you all get everything you wanted for Christmas? I did – I couldn’t believe how spoiled I got. I loved hanging out with family and friends who I don’t get to see very often as well.

Here is my contribution to Christmas dinner at my dads house. A few family members are vegetarian, and my sister has celiacs disease, so I had to come up with something a little different! I was a little unsure of these as I was making them, but they turned out really well, especially when served with the mushroom gravy. I will definitely be making them again!

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These meatballs were perfect for Christmas dinner, but I can also see them being a good weeknight dinner served with some baked yams or potatoes and a nice, simple salad – particularly if you are trying to impress some vegetarian guests!

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* As a side note, I do know that these pictures are especially terrible – sorry! The kitchen was super busy, the lighting was off, and Christmas dinner was being served… time was not my friend.

Lentil Meatballs:

Makes 30

2 cups Green Lentils

6 cups Water

2 Carrots, peeled and minced

2 Celery Stalks, minced

1/2 Yellow Onion, minced

1 clove Garlic, minced

8 oz Mushrooms, minced

2 tbsp Fresh Thyme, minced

3 tbsp Tomato Paste

2 tsp Salt

3 Eggs, beaten

1/2 cup Fresh Parsley, chopped

1/2 cup Quick Oats

1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated

1. Rinse lentils in cold water and add to a large saucepan. Cover lentils with 6 cups of water. Bring the water to an almost boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes until tender. Drain the lentils in a strainer and let cool completely.

2. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add in carrots, celery, onions, and garlic. Cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring often, until vegetables are soften and lightly golden. Add in tomato paste, thyme, and salt. Stir to combine and cook for about 3 minutes. Add in mushrooms and cook for 10 minutes, stirring often. Remove mixture from heat, transfer to a large bowl, and let cool.

3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

4. Once lentils and vegetable mixture are cool, add the lentils to the bowl with the vegetables and combine. Add in eggs and stir again. Add in oats, parmesan cheese, and parsley, stirring well to combine all ingredients. If the mixture seems very wet, add in another 1/4 cup of oats.

5. Using a tablespoon to assist you, form the mixture into 1 1/2 inch balls and place on the baking sheets 1 inch apart. Bake for 30 minutes, until the meatballs are more sturdy and lightly brown. Serve hot, topped with mushroom gravy.

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Mushroom Gravy:

Serves 6 – 8 

Adapted from AllRecipes

1/4 Butter

16 oz Mushrooms, sliced

1/4 cup All Purpose Flour, or as needed

4 cups Vegetable Broth

Salt & Pepper, to taste

1. Melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan until it foams. Stir in mushrooms. Simmer until liquid evaporates, about 20 minutes.

2. Stir in the flour, cooking and stirring for about 5 minutes. Add about 1 cup of veggie stock, stirring briskly until incorporated, then pour in the remaining stock and mix thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until thickened, about 30 minutes, stirring often. Add more flour, by the tablespoon, as needed to reach desired consistency.

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