Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gastronomics and Intestinal Godzillas!!

                                       from A Vegan for Dinner

Yeah, so gluten makes me a fart-factory. OMG yes.

And I don't actually think I'm ALLERGIC to it. 'Cause I'm fine with foods with flour and stuff in them.

It's just recipes I make with vital wheat gluten.

I swear to you, within five minutes of the food hitting my stomach, it starts making THE loudest noises ever. And physically, it feels like a small version of Godzilla is stomping around down there.

Case in point were these "meat"balls.

Holy mother of intestinal distress!

They were like flatulence bombs, like if I fed them to others, I'd immediately be arrested for committing an act of terrorism.

But crap, were they yummy.

Now, things:

I didn't 100% stick to the recipe, 'cause vegan Worcestershire sauce and chicken/beef vegan bouillons are my archnemeses (archnemesises?). They are a pain in the butt to track down, so basically, I pretend they don't exist. I have MADE vegan worc sauce before (from a recipe from like Garden of Vegan or something), but it seems so elaborate for something that, when it comes down to it, sorta just tastes like soy sauce anyways.

So yeah: that.

Also, I wasn't sure if "bouillon" meant "dried bouillon" or "wet broth." And as I'm writing this, I realize it's probably the former, otherwise it would just say "broth." But WHATEVER. Sue me.

Other things: I subbed in 2-eggs worth of egg-replacer (prepared according to the box's directions) for the flax-seed mix.

And I think that was it. (I think I tossed in some oregano too, but BFD really.)

End result: I think I need to tweak my version of this recipe a wee bit (the "beef" broth probably WOULD help in that regard) just to get a more meatbally tasting meatball. But what I really liked about these was that: a) They actually have the consistency of meatballs! Meaning: they stay together and don't crumble if anything heavier than, say, a feather brushes up against them. *COUstupidveganomiconbeanballsGH*. And b) they even stood up against the imminent sogginess that Tracy warns about--I *DID* heat up leftovers IN sauce and let them sit, and they STILL were uncrumbly.

So: way to rock the "meat"ball, Tracy!

I mean, look at how goddamn firm and photogenic they are! For pete's sake!

They're like the Christie Brinkley of the "meat"ball world:

So yeah: I recommend them.

They would make for a nice, firm "meat"ball sub for sure. And they're real good over spaghetti. Plus, they make an assload.

I've put my changes in parenthesis, but I suspect you'd be better off following the original if possible (at least seasoning/bouillon-wise--the egg sub should be fine).

But try them out! Just don't sue me for intestinal terrorism if you do!


  • 1 c. hot water

  • 1 t. vegan Worcestershire Sauce (I subbed extra soy sauce)

  • 1-1/2 T. ketchup

  • 2 T. Soy Sauce

  • 2 T. beefy vegan bouillon (or I used a half-cube of veg bouillon tossed in with the hot water above)

  • 1 t. onion powder

  • 1 t. garlic powder

  • 1/2 t/ black pepper

  • 3/4 t. paprika

  • 1/2 t. thyme

  • 3/4 c. TVP crumbles

  • 1 T. ground flax + 3 T. water (or egg-replacer prepared to make two "eggs")

  • 2 T. cornmeal

  • 1/2 c. rolled oats

  • 3/4 c. breadcrumbs

  • 2 T. flour

  • 3 T. vital wheat gluten flour


In a small bowl, toss in all the ingredients up until the TVP crumbles. Stir.

Once combined, add in your TVP crumbles. Let sit until cool.

In the meantime, in a small bowl, mix together the flax and 3 T. water (or prep your egg replacer). Beat with a fork, then lit sit until it begins to gel. Set aside.

In a separate large bowl, toss in all the remaining ingredients. Once your TVP mix cools, stir it in as well and add the "egg" mixture of choice.

Knead dough into a solid ball.

Shape into 32 "meatballs" and fry in oil until brown. Alternately, you can bake on an oiled pan at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes. (I did the latter of the two.)

Use as you would any other meatball, like spaghetti or sweet and sour sauce. Do not allow the meatballs to sit in the sauce for an extended period of time; add close to the end of the cooking period, just long enough to heat thoroughly.

(Original recipe from A Vegan for Dinner)

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